Consumers’ Perceptions of Nurses Using Recovery-focused Care to Reduce Aggression in All Acute Mental Health Including Forensic Mental Health Services: A Qualitative Study [2019]

Recovery-focused care is now the preferred model of care that health professionals can utilize to support people with a mental illness to achieve their personal and clinical recovery. However, there remains a lack of practice guidelines and educational opportunities to support nurses to use recovery-focused care with consumers who may become aggressive.

Objective: This paper reports the findings of research conducted with consumers to obtain their perception of how nurses can use recovery-focused care to reduce aggression in all acute mental health including forensic mental health services.

Research Design and Methods: Thirty-one people diagnosed with a mental illness participated in this study. The constructivist grounded theory method guided data collection, coding, and analysis to generate categories that described the consumer perspective.

Results: Five categories emerged, and these were: 1) see the person as an individual with a unique lived experience, 2) dialogue to explore the reason for the behaviour, 3) use positive communication to encourage self-management, 4) promote personal comfort to de-escalate the risk for aggression, and 5) travel alongside the person to co-produce strategies for reducing aggression.

Conclusion: The findings may be tested in future research to translate recovery principles into acute mental health settings. They can also be incorporated into nursing education and professional development training to increase understanding of consumer perspective of recovery-focused care in all acute mental health including forensic mental health services.

Eric Lim, Dianne Wynaden & Karen Dianne Heslop
Journal of Recovery in Mental Health, 2(2-3), 2019