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‘Does who we are make a difference to the research that we do?’ Telling stories about the experiences of patients detained under the Mental Health Act Rohan Borschmann, Mary Chambers, Steve Gillard, Norman Goodrich-Purnell, Kath Lovell, Kati Turner. Presented to
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‘Does who we are make a difference to the research that we do?’Telling stories about the experiences of patients detained under the Mental Health ActRohan Borschmann, Mary Chambers, Steve Gillard, Norman Goodrich-Purnell, Kath Lovell, Kati Turner
SRN/BSA Sociology of Mental Health Study Group seminar series
Steve Gillard & Kati Turner 6 April 2009
Most of the time we asked the same types of questions:
Indicated that all members of the team were trained and interviewed to the same high professional standard
Service User Researchers were much more likely to ask about people’s experiences and feelings:
The Health Services Researcher was more likely to ask questions from a medical or behavioural perspective:
- ‘Do you know what it was they gave you…? Did it have any effect on the side effects?’
While some of the coding was similar, Service User Researchers were more likely to use these themes:
“It was just such unnecessary pain ….. I’ve never, ever felt such excruciating pain before ….. it felt like my wrist was going to break.”
“It’s still a little bit of a barbaric system really, where people can sort of rough you up and bung you on the floor.”
“I didn’t like the place because it’s too violent for me. I don’t want to watch fights all day.”
“One, I think you get more freedom in an open prison than you get on a section and two, is that the dignity is gone once you’re in the mental health system. You definitely become a dejected specimen of what you formerly were.”
“You’re sort of plucked out and suspended in time out of society and society doesn’t work like that, you know? You couldn’t describe it as a progressive time at all.”
“I think it’s too much power. I think power comes in that the police are called and the nurses restrain you and it seems to me as though you’re very much at the bottom of the pile”.
“’You’re the nurse, I’m the patient, you get on with your job and I’ll get on with mine’, you know?”
“I’m pretty sure I could refuse medication, but I just wouldn’t get out of here.”
“Yeah, definitely, don’t rock the boat; all the time, a hundred percent. When you wake up in the morning, don’t rock the boat! When you go sleep at night don’t rock the boat! The nurses are in charge; you put a step out of line and they give you more medication ….. Nobody wants more medication.”
“You play the game, don’t you? If you don’t play the game, you don’t get what you want.”
“”If you don’t take your medication or if you don’t tidy your bed space, the duty team will come.”
“Play the game and get on with it. You know what I mean? You might even end up having a bit of a laugh doing it, if it’s a nice afternoon and everybody’s getting on well.”
“A lot of them are nice. A lot of them will sit down with you and have a laugh over Eastenders or something.”
“They treat you like a child, you know? One thing that needs to change is the way that they feel that they’re higher than you and that they have duty of care over you, because most of them don’t even care.”
“Sometimes at breakfast here a nurse won’t say good morning, you know? They just sort of stare you up and down. Some of them are very human but the impression they give is that they’re too busy to do it. That’s the impression.”
“They sort of sat and spoke to me, but after a while of them doing it they just didn’t both talking to me anymore.”
“It’s very difficult to dispute because we’re in the dark as to what their activities are. I mean, I wonder what the clipboard and writing down ‘obs’ is, you know what I mean?”
“I was restrained once without being asked if I’d take the tablets. They just felt that I was so high that I wouldn’t have taken the tablets and it was an occasion where I thought ‘well, I would’ve just taken the tablets if they’d have asked me to’”.
“No, they don’t try things like that at all. They just get the team out and that’s it.”