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Psychiatric disorders are common in neurological in-patients, but they are under-recognised and undertreated. We investigated the frequency of detection of mental disorder and referral to psychiatric services in a regional neuroscience centre. The results were compared with the expected prevalence. All in-patient referrals received in 2014 from the in-patient wards of the regional neuroscience centre and acute neurological unit were reviewed.
A total of 129 ward referrals were identified; of these, 78 were from the regional in-patient neurological unit, which comprised 11.4% of the total of 679 admissions to that unit.
A spectrum of neuropsychiatric conditions were recognised by neurologists, but overall rates of recognition were low. To address the problem of under-recognition, routine screening with validated assessment tools can represent a cost-effective and acceptable method to detect psychiatric disorders in an in-patient neurological setting.
Declaration of Interest
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