New booklet gives guidance on hospital admissions
Posted Friday 30 January 2004
"Admission was a very difficult time for me. I was confused and afraid. I wasn’t sure what to expect and didn’t know how I would manage. Looking back now, I can see that many of my fears were groundless. It wasn’t easy, but I survived. Admission was the right thing for me. It definitely helped me through a crisis."
Psychiatric hospital is just about the last place on earth that most people would want to spend any time. But despite this, there are around 250,000 admissions to psychiatric hospital every year. And if it’s your first time in a place like this it can be a pretty frightening experience if you don’t know what to expect.
A new booklet by Mind, launched today, gives a step-by-step guide to admission into a psychiatric hospital. The guide demystifies the admissions process and offers practical advice on a range of issues from what to bring to hospital, to how you can expect to be treated by staff and other patients.
How to cope with hospital admission builds up a picture of what you can expect whilst a patient on a psychiatric ward. The booklet familiarises the reader with the routine of ward life and highlights many of the day-to-day issues that can arise such as availability of food and drink, observations, medication, safety and privacy, money and benefits, special needs and making a complaint.
Whilst the majority of people who are admitted to psychiatric hospital are there voluntarily, some people will find that they are compulsorily admitted under a section of the Mental Health Act. This may mean that you can be prevented from leaving and you might be given medication against your will, but generally you shouldn’t be treated any differently to other patients.
If you are the friend or relative of someone being admitted to hospital it can also be a frightening and anxious time. Mind’s booklet reminds you that is just as important to look after yourself at this time but reassures carers that, as a familiar person and a link to the outside world, your support still remains crucial.
How to cope with hospital admission is available from Mind at £1.50 including postage. To order a copy, telephone Mind Publications on 0844 448 4448, email email@example.com, or visit Mind’s online bookshop at www.mind.org.uk/osb.
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