Online Journal Club Session 1

The first Online Journal Club session deals with an important issue, which is not well understood:  Self-harm.  The research study and commentary explore self-harm episodes within inpatient psychiatric services.

This study is very important because it is the first to focus solely on inpatient self-harm in a national healthcare system. The commentary offers insight into aspects of the article, specifically the reaction of nursing staff to patients who self-harm. The commentary indicated that non-suicidal self-harm is often seen as manipulative or attention-seeking by staff, which results in negative attitudes toward patients.  In contrast, the researchers found that the majority of episodes of self-harm were conducted in private and were not related to attention seeking.

The recommendation is that the reasons for self-harm should be explored and, at the same time, strategies should be implemented by nurses to maintain empathetic and therapeutic relationships with patients.

What is your reaction to this research?  Will it change the way you view patients, both those in psychiatry and those receiving care for other issues?  Tell us what you think.

You may review the podcast from this link:

Article:  James K, Stewart D, Wright S, et al. Self harm in adult inpatient psychiatric care: a national study of incident reports in the UK. Int J Nurs Stud 2012; 49: 1212– 19



Comments about the topic can be posted on this blog, or using twitter at #ebnjc.

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