Why do some voluntary patients feel coerced into hospitalisation? A mixed-methods study

Katsakou, Christina; Marougka, Stamatina; Garabette, Jonathan; Rost, Felicitas; Yeeles, Ksenija and Priebe, Stefan (2011). Why do some voluntary patients feel coerced into hospitalisation? A mixed-methods study. Psychiatry Research, 187(1-2) pp. 275–282.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.psychres.2011.01.001


This study aimed to investigate factors linked to perceived coercion at admission and during treatment among voluntary inpatients. Quantitative and qualitative methods were used. Two hundred seventy patients were screened for perceived coercion at admission. Those who felt coerced into admission rated their perceived coercion during treatment a month after admission. Patient characteristics and experiences were tested as predictors of coercion. In-depth interviews on experiences leading to perceived coercion were conducted with 36 participants and analysed thematically. Thirty-four percent of patients felt coerced into admission and half of those still felt coerced a month later. No patient characteristics were associated with perceived coercion. Those whose satisfaction with treatment increased more markedly between baseline and a month later were less likely to feel coerced a month after admission. In the qualitative interviews three themes leading to perceived coercion were identified: viewing the hospital as ineffective and other treatments as more appropriate, not participating in the admission and treatment and not feeling respected. Involving patients in the decision-making and treating them with respect may reduce perceived coercion.

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