The objective of the paper was to survey patients’ preference in relation to a continuity, or split, model of inpatient consultant care in the Louth Mental Health Service.
A written survey was administered to all patients attending the Louth Mental Health Service over a 2-week period. Participants were asked for their preferred model of care and clinical information was obtained from their clinical notes.
In total, 149 patients completed the survey questionnaire and 103 respondents (69%) indicated a preference for a continuity model of inpatient consultant psychiatric care. There was a trend for those who reported a past experience of inpatient hospitalisation to indicate a preference for the continuity model (76% v. 61%, respectively, χ 2 3.67, p=0.056).
Patients indicate a preference for a continuity model of inpatient psychiatric care and this is important to consider in service planning. More research is needed to evaluate if any model of consultant care is associated with better patient outcomes.