Prediction of irregular discharges from the acute care units of Lakehead Psychiatric Hospital / by Janice Van Kampen.
Van Kampen, Janice, 1968-
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A prospective research study attempted to identify persons who would subsequently receive an irregular discharge. The sample consisted of 150 patients who were consecutively admitted to the Acute Care units of Lakehead Psychiatric Hospital. They were examined and rated on variables previously found to be predictive of irregular discharges. The results showed that: (a) the prediction of irregular discharge was met with limited success; and (b) young males were most likely to receive irregular discharges. A retrospective examination of factors motivating patients to discharge against medical advice were investigated through individual interviews. A predominance of negative complaints concerning hospitalization were offered by the patients. During the three month follow-up period, irregular discharged patients were readmitted to hospital more often than their regular co-patients. The treatment team may be better able to meet the needs of at-risk patients by negotiating treatment contracts and by developing special goals that facilitate short durations of hospitalization. Discharge considerations compatible with the recent focus on 'consumer satisfaction' are offered.