A preliminary investigation into the experience of symptoms of psychosis in mental health professionals: implications for the psychiatric classification model of schizophrenia

M. P. Fleming, C. R. Martin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The psychiatric classification system regarding the discrete category of schizophrenia remains controversial. Key concerns regarding the legitimacy of the classification system for this presentation focus on issues of study design, the relevance and inter-relationship between symptom clusters and the lack of a coherent model of aetiology. A defining summary feature of the psychiatric model is the distinctiveness of psychotic symptoms in those with a diagnosis of schizophrenia compared with non-clinical samples. The current study sought to challenge the prevailing psychiatric system by exploring the occurrence and experience of psychotic symptoms in mental health practitioners who routinely engage in therapeutic work with clients with a primary diagnosis of schizophrenia. A total of 16% (n = 19) of the sample indicated that they experienced voice hearing while 21% (n = 26) indicated they experienced delusions as assessed by validated assessment tools. The findings are indicative of a continuum model of psychotic symptom experience and run counter to the contemporary model of psychiatric classification of this disorder. The direction of future research is indicated.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)473-480
JournalJournal of Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing
Volume16
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2009

Keywords

  • continuum model
  • delusions
  • legitimacy
  • psychiatric classification
  • schizophrenia
  • syndrome
  • voice hearing

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