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Nurses play an important role in the recovery of individuals with a lived experience of mental illness. Practices of a nurse in this context include prevention of ill health and managing the risk factors along with the early intervention, health restoration and others. On the other hand, person centred care helps the care providers to encourage the patients to communicate effectively about their illness and help them being independent regarding their health decisions. Moreover, physical and mental health is dependent on and closely connected with each other. The current study will focus upon the scenario, where two nursing students Janice and Samprit do not consider the importance and significant learning on caring a person who experiences mental illness or mental disorder.
Importance of understanding the co- morbidity conditions of both mental and physical illness
Physical health and mental health are highly dependent on each other. It is required for the students like Janice and Samprit to understand that physical diseases are likely to become the reason of mental ill health and it creates more difficulty in living a quality life. On the other hand, presence of co-morbidity of physical and mental illness increases the cost of treatment also. However, nurses are required to understand the interrelatedness of the mental and physical illnesses in order to take necessary actions against preventing the impact upon one on the other so that vulnerability to further complications and death can be reduced.
There are different mental illnesses that are closely related to physical illness and vice versa. For instance, as mentioned by Karlsen et al. (2020), anxiety and depression are the predictors of Cardiovascular Disease (CVD) development. However, as Pedersen et al. (2017), argued that there is no evidence that screening or treating the anxiety and depression will provide positive cardiovascular outcomes. On the other hand, individuals with diabetes are prone to develop depression, also depression is considered as a risk factor for diabetes.
It has been identified that nationally and internationally, there is a shortage of skilled mental health nurses that is creating problem in meeting the health needs and service demands of the patients. It has been predicted in the report of Future Health Workforce, in the year 2030, the amount of undersupply will result in 18,500 mental health nurses (Health Workforce Australia, 2020). Janice and Samprit also need to consider as lack of expertise in the mental health services may reduce the capability of the nurses to understand the underlying causes or facilitators of the disorder or co-morbidity that slows down the recovery of the patients which will result in delayed recovery and increased treatment cost. On the other hand, health service planning is also a crucial factor in accelerating the recovery process to some extent which demands consideration of both mental and physical illness.
Importance of Recovery Model of Care
The aim of the Model of Recovery is to help the people that are affected by mental illnesses to consider enhanced recovery rather than just focusing on mere existence and survival. This model helps people with mental health issues to set new goals for moving forward in their lives. The recovery model also supports the concept of encouraging individuals to make independent decisions and accountability of those decisions as well. Along with this, it provides support in developing meaningful relationships on their own that contributes in overall wellbeing of the person.
The recovery model of care provides an understanding the importance of allowing the patients to make choices that enhances physical and mental wellbeing of a person in a person centered care setting. The nurses like Janice and Samprit are required to recognize the importance of safe shelter for physical and mental hygiene, living a meaningful life that provides protection from the risk factors and the role of community in supporting in terms of emotional interaction, respect and others (Ulrich & Kear, 2018). For instance, recovery model works according to the principle of developing care planning emerging from hope, which helps reducing distresses and depression that are considered as risk factors for diabetes and CVD.
Therefore, developing understanding about the recovery model, nurses can be able to understand how promoting one’s capability of making choices regarding health can positively impact on their mental and physical health. Also, by following the principles of this model, both physical and mental health recovery can be paced up for achieving for better outcome.
Importance of a mental state examination
Mental Status Examination (MSE) is a highly important clinical assessment tool in a psychiatric setting where a holistic understanding about the mental health can be developed for better care planning and delivery of care (Kilcullen & Day, 2018). Mental Status Examination is an equivalent tool of physical examination tools which includes the description of behaviours and the mental state of the individuals.
In a person centred care setting nurses are needed to understand the perspectives of the individuals will mental illness regarding their issues so that effective healthcare planning can be developed. As MSE provides opportunity to include both the objective observations as well as subjective inputs from the patients, it helps in diagnosis and assessing the disorder which improves response towards treatment.
While delivering care to the patients seeking mental health recovery assistance, it is important to consider that patient’s preferences which help delivering satisfactory patient centred care to the individuals (Conroy et al., 2017). MSE helps in identifying these preferences that helps in delivering quality care. MSE also helps at the time of handing over the patient to other nurses where patient’s health status can be easily compared by the new nurse with the previous one. MSE helps identifying the cultural, educational and social factors that might affect the care process based on which nurses like Janice and Samprit can perform culturally safe care practices.
Steps Janice and Samprit should take to engage with and support a person with mental health needs in a hospital environment
The steps that Janice and Samprit can take under consideration while supporting an individual during the hospital stay carrying out assessment. In the aged care facilities, nurses are needed to consider the overall health and related issues considering the individual and family preferences while delivering care (van Iersel et al., 2018). The overall mental health assessment along with the co-morbidities are required to be identified that are essential to formulate a diagnosis, planning mental health program and treatment.
This can be performed through rapport establishment with the patient by communicating effectively. The principles of person centred care are also needed to be incorporated into the care process. In doing so, Janice and Samprit are required to take a non-judgemental outlook on the issues faced by the patient (Muir-Cochrane, Barkway & Nizette, 2014).
Patients are required to be treated with respect and dignity and a protective environment can be provided. It is also important to collaborate with the mental and physical health professionals such as psychiatrists and the nutritionists to provide care that is developed considering all the physical and mental needs required for supporting the patient (Lambert et al., 2017). Apart from that, Janice and Samprit can also refer the patients to community services, therapies and more for further health maintenance.
In conclusion, lack of expertise in both physical and mental health care process, may reduce the effectiveness of care as the underlying co morbidities slows the recovery process. The recovery model is also needed to be considered for ensuring overall wellbeing of the patients. In this process, the mental state examination will develop a ground for formulating diagnosis and proving effective care. Moreover, the principles and strategies of person centred care are needed to be incorporated while practising nursing care dealing with the patients with mental illness.
Conroy, T., Feo, R., Boucaut, R., Alderman, J., & Kitson, A. (2017). Role of effective nurse-patient relationships in enhancing patient safety. Nursing Standard, 31(49).
Health Workforce Australia. (2020). AUSTRALIA’S FUTURE HEALTH WORKFORCE – Nurses. Retrieved 28 October 2020, from https://www1.health.gov.au/internet/main/publishing.nsf/content/34AA7E6FDB8C16AACA257D9500112F25/$File/AFHW%20-%20Nurses%20detailed%20report.pdf
Karlsen, H. R., Saksvik-Lehouillier, I., Stone, K. L., Schernhammer, E., Yaffe, K., & Langvik, E. (2020). Anxiety as a risk factor for cardiovascular disease independent of depression: a prospective examination of community-dwelling men (the MrOS study). Psychology & Health, 1-16.
Kilcullen, M., & Day, A. (2018). Culturally informed case conceptualisation: Developing a clinical psychology approach to treatment planning for non‐Indigenous psychologists working with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander clients. Clinical Psychologist, 22(3), 280-289.
Lambert, T. J., Reavley, N. J., Jorm, A. F., & Oakley Browne, M. A. (2017). Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists expert consensus statement for the treatment, management and monitoring of the physical health of people with an enduring psychotic illness. Australian & New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry, 51(4), 322-337.
Muir-Cochrane, E., Barkway, P., & Nizette, D. (2014). Mosby's Pocketbook of Mental Health-E-Book. Elsevier Health Sciences.
Pedersen, S. S., Von Känel, R., Tully, P. J., & Denollet, J. (2017). Psychosocial perspectives in cardiovascular disease. European journal of preventive cardiology, 24(3_suppl), 108-115.
Ulrich, B. T., & Kear, T. M. (2018). The health and safety of nephrology nurses and the environments in which they work: Important for nurses, patients, and organizations. Nephrology NursingJournal, 45(2), 117-139.
van Iersel, M., Latour, C. H., De Vos, R., Kirschner, P. A., & op Reimer, W. J. S. (2018). Perceptions of community care and placement preferences in first-year nursing students: a multicentre, cross-sectional study. Nurse Education Today, 60, 92-97.
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