The Experience of Mental Health Literacy in Health Professionals in Non-Mental Health Areas

By Jo-Ann Giandinoto and Karen-Leigh Edward.

Published by The International Journal of Health, Wellness and Society

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Published Online: April 8, 2016 $US5.00

Some literature suggests that health professionals in acute medical care settings find the complex care of patients who experience mental and physical co-morbidities challenging and consequently the patient experience of care can be poor. A number of studies have investigated health professional’s attitudes and perceptions however there is limited research that investigates the lived experience in a current healthcare context. The aim of this research was to explicate an in-depth description of the health professional’s experience when caring for patients experiencing co-morbid physical and mental illness in acute medical care settings. A phenomenological design was undertaken with six participants representing nursing and medical disciplines. One-on-one semi-structured interviews were used and the data collected underwent thematic analysis using an extended version of Colaizzi’s phenomenological inquiry. The areas that emerged were: managing challenging behaviours, optimising environmental factors, mental health skills and knowledge, and managing negative attitudes. These areas can be considered for extending mental health literacy of general health professionals.

Keywords: Mental Health Literacy, Acute Medical Care, Health Professional

The International Journal of Health, Wellness and Society, Volume 6, Issue 2, June 2016, pp.1-15. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Published Online: April 8, 2016 (Article: Electronic (PDF File; 730.550KB)).

Jo-Ann Giandinoto

Research Associate, Nursing Research Unit, St. Vincent's Private Hospital, Australian Catholic University, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

Assoc. Prof. Karen-Leigh Edward

Director, Chair, Nursing Research Unit, St. Vincent's Private Hospital, Australian Catholic University, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia