The voice of detainees in a high security setting on services for people with personality disorder
KeywordAntisocial personality disorder
Attitude to health
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AbstractBACKGROUND: British government Home and Health Departments have been consulting widely about service development for people with ' dangerous severe personality disorder' (DSPD). There has, however, been no consultation with service users, nor is there any user view literature in this area.
METHODS: All people detained in one high security hospital under the legal classification of psychopathic disorder were eligible but those on the admission or intensive care wards were not approached. Views of service were elicited using a purpose designed semi-structured interview. The principal researcher was independent of all clinical teams. Confidentiality about patients' views was assured.
AIMS: To establish views on services from one subgroup of people nominated by the government department as having 'DSPD'.
RESULTS: Sixty-one of 89 agreed to interview. With security a given, about half expressed a preference for a high security hospital setting, 20% prison and 25% elsewhere, generally medium secure hospitals. Participants most valued caring, understanding and 'experience' among staff. An ideal service was considered to be one within small, domestic living units, providing group and individual therapies. Some found living with people with mental illness difficult, but some specified not wanting segregated units. Views were affected by gender and comorbidity.
CONCLUSIONS: As the sample were all in hospital, the emphasis on treatment may reflect a placement bias. All but five participants, however, had had experience of both health and criminal justice services, so were well placed to talk with authority about preferences.