The Systemic Assessment Clinic, a Novel Method for Assessing Patients in General Adult Psychiatry: Presentation and Preliminary Service Evaluation.
Turri, Maria Grazia
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Maria Grazia Turri, Stephen Merson, Sue McNab & Ruth E. Cooper .The Systemic Assessment Clinic, a Novel Method for Assessing Patients in General Adult Psychiatry: Presentation and Preliminary Service Evaluation. Community Mental Health Journal (2020)
The traditional model of psychiatric assessment and diagnosis can be criticised as reductive. We developed an innovative model for psychiatric assessment of adult patients referred to our adult mental health team, the Systemic Assessment Clinic, incorporating the principles and techniques of systemic family therapy and dialogical practice into standard psychiatric assessment. We conducted a service evaluation, comparing prospective use of mental health services for patients assessed either in the Systemic Assessment Clinic or in standard assessment. Patients assessed in the Systemic Assessment Clinic had more favourable outcomes than those in standard assessment: they were significantly less likely to need multiple follow-up treatment appointments with a psychiatrist and to be re-referred to mental health services once discharged, indicating reduced healthcare costs. Satisfaction rates for participants attending the systemic assessment clinic were high. Our service evaluation gives preliminary evidence that the Systemic Assessment Clinic could be a potential new model for psychiatric assessment; further evaluation is warranted in a randomised controlled trial.