Patient participation: causing moral stress in psychiatric nursing?

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Patient participation is an ideal within mental health care in many parts of the world 1 and an expectation within British, American, Finnish, Swedish and Norwegian regulations. Even so, and although patient participation is strongly connected to the ethical ideal of autonomy, the concept's content and meaning can be difficult to grasp because of its complexity and ambiguity 4.
This was one of the reasons why nurses in a subacute psychiatric hospital took the initiative for this study. They wanted help to study how to accommodate for patient participation among their patients as they saw this as an ever‐present ethical challenge. The original research question was as follows: How do psychiatric healthcare workers understand the concept of patient participation in their clinical practice? Focus group interviews were organised to discuss this conundrum, and the feeling of moral stress shone through these discussions even if never specifically mentioned.
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