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dc.contributor.authorMilton, A.
dc.contributor.authorMullan, Barbara
dc.identifier.citationMilton, A. and Mullan, B. 2014. Communication of a mental health diagnosis: a systematic synthesis and narrative review. Journal of Mental Health. 23 (5): pp. 261-270.

Background: There is limited understanding of the mechanisms used to effectively communicate with service-users about their mental health diagnoses. Aims: To conduct a systematic synthesis of studies that present data on the communication of a psychiatric diagnosis. Methods: Comprehensive database and manual searches were conducted resulting in the inclusion of 30 quantitative and qualitative papers. Results: The majority of studies were descriptive. The rate of service-users being informed of their diagnosis has increased over the past decade. Consumer communication preferences were not always satisfactorily addressed in practice. Individual characteristics of service-users and clinicians influenced whether a diagnostic discussion took place. Results from intervention studies aimed at facilitating diagnostic communication reported significant improvements in service-user satisfaction and mood and clinician communication skills. Conclusions: This review highlights a gap in the system of communication between clinicians and service-users. To assist clinicians to talk effectively with individuals about their mental health, communication protocols and training need to be further developed and assessed. Such developments would benefit from well-designed randomised controlled trial protocols, should incorporate service-users’ preferences and address stigma-related concerns.

dc.publisherInforma Healthcare
dc.subjectmental health
dc.subjectBreaking bad news
dc.subjectcommunication models
dc.titleCommunication of a mental health diagnosis: a systematic synthesis and narrative review
dc.typeJournal Article
dcterms.source.titleJournal of Mental Health

Copyright © 2014 Shadowfax Publishing and Informa UK. Published by Informa UK

curtin.departmentSchool of Psychology
curtin.accessStatusOpen access

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