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Mentally ill patients feel like the emergency psych ward does not listen to them

Almost half of those who seek help from psychiatric wards in Skåne do not feel that they are taken seriously. This is shown in a new survey carried out by six patient organisations.
Kristianstad • Publicerad 16 november 2022 • Uppdaterad 17 november 2022
Kollage med Mathilda Holm, OCD-föreningen östra Skåne och Blekinge, plus psykiatriska akutmottagningen i Kristianstad.
Kollage med Mathilda Holm, OCD-föreningen östra Skåne och Blekinge, plus psykiatriska akutmottagningen i Kristianstad.Foto: Privat, Bosse Nilsson

300 people have responded to questions about how they felt about the way staff engaged with them at the four adult emergency psych wards in Kristianstad, Lund, Malmö and Helsingborg plus the A&E departments for addiction and Bup (child and youth psychiatry) in Malmö.

The result confirms what the patient organisations were afraid of.

– The most common and most recurring answer was that they were not listened to or taken seriously. Many were turned away. Their needs were not considered to be great enough, says Mathilda Holm from the OCD association in east Skåne and Blekinge for people with OCD.

In Kristianstad, 25 per cent responded that they had been turned away from the psychiatric ward. Mathilda Holm thinks it is truly sad, even though it may be due to the fact that the psychiatric ward was closed during the evenings and night both during summer and autumn this year.

– I think it's tragic that it has to be this way. I know that the health care service is on its knees, but it's still awful that they leave the A&E feeling that way.

Psykiatriska akutmottagningen i Kristianstad har stängt på kvällar och nätter i höst.
Psykiatriska akutmottagningen i Kristianstad har stängt på kvällar och nätter i höst.Foto: Bosse Nilsson

Most have sought help for suicidal thoughts, anxiety and major depression. 54 per cent of respondents in Kristianstad did not feel listened to.

– Several responded: "I didn't have a concrete plan on how I was going to kill myself and so I was turned away", says Mathilda Holm.

At the same time, the answers are varied.

– Either people are very happy or it's a disaster. Is it because of the staff that were there or the problems a person has? asks Mathilda Holm.

Now she and the other representatives from the patient organisations will compile the results and present them to the Impact Council in Region Skåne in December.

They will inform the emergency departments in spring. Mathilda Holm hopes that they will also get to meet the staff that work closest to the patients.

– The responses are not for us. We can only say "this is what comes up in the survey, is there anything that can be done about it?"

However, Mathilda Holm still has an idea about what the staff can do.

– No matter how stressed you are, you can smile a little and say "I understand". How you engage with someone is so important. It could make a difference between life and death.

Sofyan AswadSkicka e-post
Så här jobbar Mosaik Kristianstadsbladet med journalistik. Uppgifter som publiceras ska vara korrekta och relevanta. Vi strävar efter förstahandskällor och att vara på plats där det händer. Trovärdighet och opartiskhet är centrala värden för vår nyhetsjournalistik.