Mental Illness Recognition Up in U.K. General Hospital Admissions
TUESDAY, Sept. 22, 2020 — From 2006 to 2017, there was improvement in the sensitivity for recording of severe mental illness (SMI) diagnosis in English general hospitals, but less accurate diagnostic recording was seen for some groups including ethnic minorities, according to a study published online Sept. 17 in PLOS Medicine.
Hassan Mansour, from the University College London, and colleagues examined the sensitivity of SMI recordings within general hospitals in a cohort study of 13,786 adults with SMI diagnosed during 2006 to 2017 linked to English national records for 45,706 emergency hospital admissions.
The researchers found that sensitivity was 76.7 percent for recording of SMI as any mental health diagnosis. Category-level sensitivity was 56.4 and 49.7 percent for schizophrenia spectrum disorders and bipolar affective disorders, respectively. There was an increase in the sensitivity of SMI recording in emergency admissions from 47.8 to 75.4 percent from 2006 to 2017. Less accurate diagnostic recording was seen in association with minority ethnicity, being married, and having better mental and physical health.
“The disparities we found between ethnic groups are concerning because previous studies have identified particularly poor health outcomes for people from minority ethnic groups with severe mental illnesses,” Mansour said in a statement. “Training in culturally sensitive diagnosis may be needed to reduce inequalities in medical care.”
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