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Article: Organization of old age psychiatric services

TitleOrganization of old age psychiatric services
Authors
Issue Date2008
Citation
Psychiatry, 2008, v. 7 n. 2, p. 49-54 How to Cite?
AbstractIn terms of service activity in psychiatry, older people are an important group. People aged more than 65 years make up around a third of all mental health activity in the UK in terms of admissions, re-admissions and community contacts. However, the profile of disorder and needs differs from that in younger age groups. The challenges presented by dementia and co-morbid physical illness and disability require particular professional skills. Services need to be able to deal with the complex mix of social, psychological, physical and biological factors found in the elderly mentally ill. The development and delivery of such services is discussed in this contribution. Even given resource constraints and other challenges, there can be few more exciting parts of medicine with which to be involved, and where there is greater likelihood of clinically significant advances in treatment and care in the next 10-15 years, than old age psychiatry. The biological advances in understanding the causes of dementia are being rapidly transformed into therapeutic approaches as diverse as disease-modifying medication, immunization, and stem-cell therapy. The rate of transformational change in understanding and action in this area is stunning. In service terms we need to gear ourselves up to identify cases early, when there is the possibility of prevention of future harm; for example, in terms of crises, institutionalization, depression, carer burden, loss of function, and possibly further cognitive decline. The next generation of disease-modifying compounds will further challenge us to identify and intervene in presymptomatic states as well as in those already affected by dementia. Services must develop to meet local needs and will need to build on local strengths. In service development it is seldom the case that one size fits all, so there will be local variation in what works best. The announced National Dementia Strategy gives real hope that things can change. Finally, the focus on dementia should not be at the expense of older people with other serious mental disorder. Services should be considered failures if they do not ensure that older people with depression, schizophrenia, mania and other mental disorders also receive good quality care. This will mean investing in good quality comprehensive older people's mental health services rather than tokenistically opening services for working age adults to older people. © 2008 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Persistent Identifierhttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/195190
ISSN
2012 SCImago Journal Rankings: 0.129

 

DC FieldValueLanguage
dc.contributor.authorBanerjee, S-
dc.contributor.authorChan, J-
dc.date.accessioned2014-02-25T01:40:17Z-
dc.date.available2014-02-25T01:40:17Z-
dc.date.issued2008-
dc.identifier.citationPsychiatry, 2008, v. 7 n. 2, p. 49-54-
dc.identifier.issn1476-1793-
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/195190-
dc.description.abstractIn terms of service activity in psychiatry, older people are an important group. People aged more than 65 years make up around a third of all mental health activity in the UK in terms of admissions, re-admissions and community contacts. However, the profile of disorder and needs differs from that in younger age groups. The challenges presented by dementia and co-morbid physical illness and disability require particular professional skills. Services need to be able to deal with the complex mix of social, psychological, physical and biological factors found in the elderly mentally ill. The development and delivery of such services is discussed in this contribution. Even given resource constraints and other challenges, there can be few more exciting parts of medicine with which to be involved, and where there is greater likelihood of clinically significant advances in treatment and care in the next 10-15 years, than old age psychiatry. The biological advances in understanding the causes of dementia are being rapidly transformed into therapeutic approaches as diverse as disease-modifying medication, immunization, and stem-cell therapy. The rate of transformational change in understanding and action in this area is stunning. In service terms we need to gear ourselves up to identify cases early, when there is the possibility of prevention of future harm; for example, in terms of crises, institutionalization, depression, carer burden, loss of function, and possibly further cognitive decline. The next generation of disease-modifying compounds will further challenge us to identify and intervene in presymptomatic states as well as in those already affected by dementia. Services must develop to meet local needs and will need to build on local strengths. In service development it is seldom the case that one size fits all, so there will be local variation in what works best. The announced National Dementia Strategy gives real hope that things can change. Finally, the focus on dementia should not be at the expense of older people with other serious mental disorder. Services should be considered failures if they do not ensure that older people with depression, schizophrenia, mania and other mental disorders also receive good quality care. This will mean investing in good quality comprehensive older people's mental health services rather than tokenistically opening services for working age adults to older people. © 2008 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.-
dc.languageeng-
dc.relation.ispartofPsychiatry-
dc.titleOrganization of old age psychiatric services-
dc.typeArticle-
dc.description.naturelink_to_subscribed_fulltext-
dc.identifier.doi10.1016/j.mppsy.2007.12.002-
dc.identifier.scopuseid_2-s2.0-38849149073-
dc.identifier.volume7-
dc.identifier.issue2-
dc.identifier.spage49-
dc.identifier.epage54-

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