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Mental health policies emphasise that caregivers' views of involuntary psychiatric treatment should be taken into account. However, there is little evidence on how caregivers view such treatment.
To explore caregivers' satisfaction with the involuntary hospital treatment of patients and what factors are associated with caregivers' appraisals of treatment.
A multicentre prospective study was carried out in eight European countries. Involuntarily admitted patients and their caregivers rated their appraisal of treatment using the Client Assessment of Treatment Scale 1 month after admission.
A total of 336 patients and their caregivers participated. Caregivers' appraisals of treatment were positive (mean of 8.5 on a scale from 0 to 10) and moderately correlated with patients' views. More positive caregivers' views were associated with greater patients' symptom improvement.
Caregivers' appraisals of involuntary in-patient treatment are rather favourable. Their correlation with patients' symptom improvement may underline their relevance in clinical practice.
Globalisation is the process by which traditional boundaries of cultures are changing. Industrialisation, urbanisation and influence of the media are influencing idioms of distress across cultures.
To discuss the role of globalisation, using the epidemiology, diagnosis, clinical presentation and treatment of depression across various cultures as an example.
Recent studies focusing on transcultural aspects of depression were reviewed and summarised.
Cultural, social and religious mores account for variations in the presentation of depression across cultures. Somatic symptoms are common presenting features throughout the world and may serve as cultural idioms of distress, but psychological symptoms can usually be found when probed. Feelings of guilt and suicide rates vary across cultures and depression may be underdiagnosed.
Training packages could enhance clinicians' cultural competency in multicultural settings. However, globalisation is likely to influence idioms of distress and pathways to care in ways that are difficult to predict.
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