Tag Archives: mental health

ieMR Liaison Psych Templates

A Quick Explanation

In the hospital that I work in we use ieMR. I’m a fan of ieMR, even though it has made the bad art of gingerbread women/men, genograms and other diagrams obsolete (more about that here: meta4RN.com/picture).

Car vs Bike Wounds: even an illustration that completely lacks artistic merit can convey a lot of information more effectively than a page full of text.

One of the reasons I like ieMR is that it accommodates auto-text/templates, which – in turn – assists clinicians to document with better consistency and more structure than they might have otherwise. When we have students on placement I used to send them MS Word versions of my ieMR templates, and assist them to get get them set-up on their ieMR account. That’s become a bit tricky to do since my hospital has shifted to Office365, so I am liberating the templates onto this blog page simply to circumnavigate that problem.

I’ve made it clear from the very beginning that this website does not represent the opinions of anyone else or any organisation (see number 13 here: meta4RN.com/about). So, just as a reminder, I’m putting the templates here because emailing them to students as word documents doesn’t work anymore. It’s not a recommendation for you. It’s not my employer’s idea. It’s fine if you don’t like the templates. It’s fine if you never use them yourself. I’m doing this simply for the convenience of me and the students I work with, that’s all.

Making ieMR auto-text/templates

To set-up ieMR auto-text/templates It’s easiest to get someone who knows how to sit with you for 2 minutes to show you. Really, about 2 minutes is all it takes.

In the absence of a helpful human there’s videos (eg: here) and PDFs (eg: here) to guide you. Or just google your question – some hospitals have their help info behind their firewall, but many do not.

That’s all the explanation I want to give. The prime purpose of this blog post is to share the content for easy copy and paste, so let’s get on with it…

Initial/Comprehensive Psychiatric Assessment

Review

Cognitive Screening results

End of Episode/Transfer of Care

End

That’s it. I’ve only just realised now that the formatting doesn’t carry across to ieMR. Bugger.

Please let me know via the comments section below if you know how to overcome that problem easily. BTW: as you can probably tell by this very basic-looking website, i’m not a coder or computer whiz. If there’s a fix it’ll need to be pretty straight forward for me to get it right :-).

Paul McNamara, 20 June 2019

Short URL: meta4RN.com/ieMR

Creative Commons Licence
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 2.5 Australia License.

10 Delirium Misconceptions

This table/info extracted from Oldham et al (2018) is too handy not to share:

PDF version [easy to print]: 10DeliriumMisconceptions

Text version [just putting it here so that it’s searchable; hello google :-)]

1.
Misconception: This patient is oriented to person, place, and time. They’re not delirious.
Best Evidence: Delirium evaluation minimally requires assessing attention, orientation, memory, and the thought process, ideally at least once per nursing shift, to capture daily fluctuations in mental status.
2.
Misconception: Delirium always resolves.
Best Evidence: Especially in cognitively vulnerable patients, delirium may persist for days or even months after the proximal “causes” have been addressed.
3.
Misconception: We should expect frail, older patients to get confused at times, especially after receiving pain medication.
Best Evidence: Confusion in frail, older patients always requires further assessment.
4.
Misconception: The goal of a delirium work-up is to find the main cause of delirium.
Best Evidence: Delirium aetiology is typically multifactorial.
5.
Misconception: New-onset psychotic symptoms in late life likely represents primary mental illness.
Best Evidence: New delusions or hallucinations, particularly nonauditory, in middle age or later deserve evaluation for delirium or another medical cause.
6.
Misconception: Delirium in patients with dementia is less important because these patients are already confused at baseline.
Best Evidence: Patients with dementia deserve even closer monitoring for delirium because of their elevated delirium risk and because delirium superimposed on dementia indicates marked vulnerability.
7.
Misconception: Delirium treatment should include psychotropic medication.
Best Evidence: They are best used judiciously, if at all, for specific behaviours or symptoms rather than delirium itself.
8.
Misconception: The patient is delirious due to a psychiatric cause.
Best Evidence: Delirium always has a physiological cause.
9.
Misconception: It’s often best to let quiet patients rest.
Best Evidence: Hypoactive delirium is common and often under-recognized.
10.
Misconception: Patients become delirious just from being in the intensive care unit.
Best Evidence:  Delirium in the intensive care unit, as with delirium occurring in any setting, is caused by physiological and pharmacological insults.

Source/Reference

Oldham, M., Flanagan, N., Khan, A., Boukrina, O. & Marcantonio, E. (2018) Responding to Ten Common Delirium Misconceptions With Best Evidence: An Educational Review for Clinicians. The Journal of Neuropsychiatry and Clinical Neurosciences, 30:1, 51-57.
doi.org/10.1176/appi.neuropsych.17030065

End

This is the least original blog post I’ve written. All I’ve done is transpose a table from this paper.

Why bother? So I can quickly and easily share it at work. I have conversations about this stuff a lot, especially misconceptions 1, 7 and 8. It’s handy to have an accessible and credible source to support these discussions.

That’s it. Visit the journal article yourself for elaboration about the misconceptions and evidence of delirium: doi.org/10.1176/appi.neuropsych.17030065

Paul McNamara, 18 April 2019

Short URL meta4RN.com/10Delirium

 

Self Care: Surviving emotionally taxing work environments

The nature of nursing will mean that we are likely to be are exposed to a range of challenges. It’s not unusual for nurses to witness aggression, feel unsafe, have first-hand exposure to other people’s tragedies, and to deal with the physical and emotional outcomes of trauma. This emotionally taxing environment can be pretty stressful. It’s something we should talk about.

I’m often asked to talk about this sort of stuff at inservice education sessions. This page is a 2019 update to support those sessions.

Printed handouts are so last century.

“Self care: Surviving emotionally taxing work environments” is planned as an interactive session accompanied by visual cues to give the discussion a bit of structure. Consequently, the transcript/dialogue of the presentation can not be included here.  The visual presentation itself doesn’t use powerpoint slides. It uses the prettier (and free!) platform Prezi instead: prezi.com/skmu0lbnmkm5/first-thyself/#

I’m recycling and combining a lot of old ideas for the 2019 sessions. Self-plagiarism? Nah – it’s a groovy remix of some favourite old songs. Regular visitors to meta4RN.com may recognise the repetition, and be quite bored with me using the website as a place to store updated versions of old stuff. Sorry about that. I’ll pop-up a new and original post in coming days.

Here is the online presentation: Prezi

Here are the resources and references used in the presentation: (because I’m recycling old ideas this list is ridiculously self-referential).

Australian College of Mental Health Nurses [www.acmhn.org], Australian College of Nursing [www.acn.edu.au], and Australian College of Midwives [www.midwives.org.au] (2019) Joint Position Statement: Clinical Supervision for Nurses + Midwives. Released online April 2019, PDF available via each organisation’s website, and here: ClinicalSupervisionJointPositionStatement

Basic Life Support Procedure
https://qheps.health.qld.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0030/607098/pro_basiclifesprt.pdf

Dymphna (re the patron saint of mental health nurses) meta4RN.com/amazing

Eales, Sandra. (2018). A focus on psychological safety helps teams thrive. InScope, No. 08., Summer 2018 edition, published by Queensland Nurses and Midwives Union on 13/12/18, pages 58-59. Eales2018

Emotional Aftershocks (the story of Fire Extinguisher Guy & Nursing Ring Theory) meta4RN.com/aftershocks

Football, Nursing and Clinical Supervision (re validating protected time for reflection and skill rehearsal) meta4RN.com/footy

Hand Hygiene and Mindful Moments (re insitu self-care strategies) meta4RN.com/hygiene

Lalochezia (getting sweary doesn’t necessarily mean getting abusive) meta4RN.com/lalochezia

Nurse & Midwife Support nmsupport.org.au  phone 1800 667 877
– we have specifically targeted 24/7 confidential support available

Nurses, Midwives, Medical Practitioners, Suicide and Stigma (re the alarming toll of those who undertake emotional labour) meta4RN.com/stigma

Nurturing the Nurturers (the Pit Head Baths and clinical supervision stories) meta4RN.com/nurturers

Queensland Health. (2009). Clinical Supervision Guidelines for Mental Health Services. PDF

Spector, P., Zhiqing, Z. & Che, X. (2014) Nurse exposure to physical and nonphysical violence, bullying, and sexual harassment: A quantitative review. International Journal of Nursing Studies. Vol 50(1), pp 72-84. www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0020748913000357

That was bloody stressful! What’s next?
Web: meta4RN.com/bloody
QHEPS: https://qheps.health.qld.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0038/555779/That-was-bloody-stressful.pdf

Zero Tolerance for Zero Tolerance (a reframing of reducing aggression) meta4RN.com/zero

It’s OK if you forget everything about today’s talk, just don’t forget that there is 24 hour support available via 1800 667 877 or https://nmsupport.org.au

End

Please have a play with the pretty Prezi: http://prezi.com/0ysapc6z9aqg

Thanks for visiting. As always your comments are welcome.

Paul McNamara, 22 February 2019

Short URL: meta4RN.com/SelfCare

 

 

Diagnostic Overshadowing

Consultation liaison psychiatry services (CLPS) are, typically, based in a general hospital setting to provide the dual services of mental health clinical assessment/treatment and clinician support/education. The clinical and education roles overlap – a lot.

A significant part of the CLPS job is undiagnosing mental illness. Undiagnosis is often correcting a misdiagnosis, and also serves to validate the emotions and experiences of people (Patfield, 2011; Lakeman & Emeleus, 2014). It is not unusual for CLPS to be asked to see somebody who is emotionally overwhelmed or dysregulated. Sometimes this is in the context of mental health problems often in the context of significant stress. Naturally, we do not want to ‘psychiatricise’ the human condition. Of course, you cry when you are sad, and of course you are anxious when, like Courtney Barnett in ‘Avant Gardener’, you are not that good at breathing in. Of course, you’re frustrated when you are in pain or do not understand what’s going on.

Validating understandable and proportionate emotions is important.

It is equally important to make sure that somebody who has experienced mental illness previously does not have every presentation to the hospital/outpatient clinic seen through that lens. That is called “diagnostic overshadowing”; which is a significant problem.
Diagnostic overshadowing is where physical symptoms are overlooked, dismissed or downplayed as a psychiatric/ psychosomatic symptom. It must be one of the most dangerous things that happen in hospitals.

The President of the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists, Professor Malcolm Hopwood, said in May 2016, “I sometimes think that the worse thing a person can do for their physical health is to be diagnosed with a mental health disorder.” Prof Hopwood cited stigma and discrimination in the health sector as contributing problems to early mortality amongst people with mental health problems.

People, hospital clinical staff included, are often shocked when they find out that people diagnosed with mental illness die between 10 and 25 years younger than the general public. Although suicide is a contributing factor to high mortality rates amongst this part of the community, it is alarming to note that the overwhelming majority – 86% – of people with mental health problems who had a premature death did not die from suicide (Happell & Ewart, 2016).

About 60% of people who experience mental health problems experience chronic physical health problems too. Poor mental health is a major risk factor for poor physical health, and vice versa (Harris et al, 2018).

The lived experience

Diagnostic overshadowing happens outside of hospitals too. In the example below, understandable and proportionate human emotions were misinterpreted as psychopathology. The cascade of events that followed makes for a sobering read:

Eight years ago I was diagnosed with bipolar affective disorder (BPAD) and recovered enough to commence a PhD. Unable to obtain travel insurance for a conference due to my diagnosis, I disclosed the reason to my supervisor. Unfortunately, he began to see all stress (normal to a PhD student) as BPAD symptoms and decided I was incapable of completing the PhD and progressively began to discriminate against me. My mental health started to decline. I imagine this must have validated his belief that I was an unsuitable student.

I received some help from the university, with an advisor indicating that my supervisor was undermining my work. The advisor was promoted. Despite not knowing me, his replacement did not believe my account and disagreed with my psychiatrist’s assessment of my mental state. Other staff and graduate students joined the belief that I could not cope, alienating me from the entire department.

After almost 18 months of fighting, I was once again depressed and felt defeated. I left the degree and lost my scholarship. It was one of the hardest things I have done. After, I was unable to gain employment; overqualified for most positions, lacking experience for the rest, and no references. After five months of constant rejections and lingering grief from losing the PhD, my self-worth and coping ability were so diminished, I made a very serious suicide attempt. I was so distressed that I could not see another solution.

Seven months later and I still have no paid employment. I have been undertaking volunteer work to regain some meaning in my life and have set myself up for the long-term with a new field of study. However, this does not pay the bills, and living like this is taking its toll. Sometimes I do not know where my next meal will come from, I have lost friends because of their attitude towards mental illness, and have withdrawn from health-related activities because of a lack of finances. Most days I cope and can find meaning in what I do, some days are much harder.

Questions for Reflection

Assuming that you – the person reading this – is a health professional, we have some questions we would like you to reflect on.

Have I ever witnessed a person’s mental health history influence how their presenting complaint was investigated or treated?

How does my workplace prevent mental health stigmatising and diagnostic overshadowing?

What can I do to support good holistic patient care without falling into the trap of diagnostic overshadowing?

References

Happell, B. & Ewart, S. (2016). ‘Please believe me, my life depends on it’: Physical health concerns of people diagnosed with mental illness. Australian Nursing and Midwifery Journal, 23(11), 47.

Harris, B. Duggan, M. Batterham, P. Bartlem, K. Clinton-McHarg, T. Dunbar, J. Fehily, C. Lawrence, D. Morgan, M. Rosenbaum, S. (2018). Australia’s mental health and physical health tracker: Background paper. Australian Health Policy Collaboration issues paper no. 2018-02, Melbourne, AHPC.

Lakeman, R. & Emeleus, M. (2014). Un-diagnosing mental illness in the process of helping. Psychotherapy in Australia, 21(1), 38-45.

Patfield, M. (2011). Undiagnosis: An Important New Role for Psychiatry. Australasian Psychiatry, 19(2), 107–109.

Seriously mentally ill ‘die younger’. (2016, May 10). SBS News. Retrieved from https://www.sbs.com.au/news/seriously-mentally-ill-die-younger

PDF version

A one page PDF version [suitable for printing] is available here: DiagnosticOvershadowing

Citation

McNamara, P. & Callahan, R. (2018). Diagnostic Overshadowing. News, Summer 2018 edition (published December 2018), Australian College of Mental Health Nurses, page 17.

End Notes

The article above is a tidied-up version of a blog post that Bec and I collaborated on in October 2018 (see meta4RN.com/shadoworiginal). This is not called self-plagiarising, it’s more like doing a studio version of a demo tape. 🙂

Many thanks to Sharina Smith for encouraging us to submit the article to ACMHN News.

Paul McNamara, 15 December 2018

Short URL meta4RN.com/shadow

 

 

Snow White, Complex Trauma and Twitter

On Tuesday 4th December 2018 Naomi Halpern’s workshop “Working with Complex Trauma: The Snow White Model” was delivered at the Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital. I was amongst the small group of mental health nurses and social workers who joined the workshop via videoconference from Cairns Hospital. Here are my notes/tweets:

1.

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4.

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8.

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10.

11.

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22.

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34.

35.


What’s all this then?

Some people take notes in workshops using ye olde method of pen and paper. I’m not criticising – pen and paper are cute and quaint. But how on earth do they find their notes quickly and easily after the workshop has ended?.

I tweet my notes. They’re quickly and easily retrieved via phone, tablet or computer at anytime. Sometimes, if the presenter is OK with it, I collate workshop/conference tweets and plonk them all on my webpage for even quicker and easier future reference. That’s what this is all about.

Also, sometimes I have trouble explaining to other health professionals why I’m enthusiastic about Twitter for work-related stuff. It’s easier to show examples of how I use it, rather than just chin-wagging and flapping-about like a chook in a cyclone.

End

Sincere thanks to Naomi Halpern (aka @halpernnaomi1) for an engaging, informative workshop. For a single person to hold the attention and interest of those of us who were joining via videoconference for a whole day is very impressive. Also, I’m grateful to Naomi for agreeing to my request to collate these tweets here.

That’s it. As always, your feedback is welcome via the comments section below.

Paul McNamara, 8th December 2018

Short URL: meta4RN.com/SnowWhite

Your Ordinary is Extraordinary

“I have come to learn that it is fundamental for mental health nurses to establish relationships of trust and provide care to people who are in need, setting aside any bias or prejudice. What this means is that, as mental health nurses, you are championing human rights on a daily basis by simply doing your jobs. It must seem so ordinary to you as you go about your lives, but your ordinary is extraordinary.
Sharina Smith
Communications and Publications Officer
Australian College of Mental Health Nurses
September 2018

Cite in text
(Smith, 2018. p. 2)

Cite in reference list
Smith, S. (2018, September). Welcome. ACMHN News. Spring 2018 edition. Australian College of Mental Health Nurses: Canberra.

Context

I was flicking through the most recent edition of ACMHN News, themed “mental health and human rights”, one last time before consigning it the recycling bin. Sharina Smith is editor of the publication, and always offers a short “welcome” column introducing the content. Stopping my trip to the bin, the three sentences quoted above jumped off the page.

It’s instructive to have someone from an unrelated field (in Sharina’s case marketing and communications), examine mental health nursing through their lens of education and experience. Sharina’s comments shine a spotlight on an incredibly important part of our work that we often take for granted.

Just as the paper of the magazine deserves to be recycled, so do Sharina’s observations about human rights and mental health nursing. That’s the purpose of liberating the excerpt above from the printed page to the internet.

End

Sincere thanks to Sharina Smith, and all the office staff at ACMHN. Your ongoing support of Australian mental health nurses is very much appreciated.

Find out more about ACMHN here: www.acmhn.org

Paul McNamara, 10 November 2018

Short URL meta4RN.com/ordinary