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How person-centred care can be provided in forensic mental health

17 August 2023
Volume 32 · Issue 15

The concept of person-centred care is the foundation of contemporary nursing practice (McCormack and McCance, 2016) and is now codified by the Nursing and Midwifery Council (2018) within the seven standards of proficiency for registered nurses. Person-centred care seeks to enhance the partnership between patient and clinician. It acknowledges the patient's beliefs and values regarding their care, and looks beyond their primary health needs towards a more holistic approach (Delaney, 2018; Marklund et al, 2020).

Person-centred nursing and forensic mental health care have historically been considered to be incompatible – to exist at opposite ends of the spectrum regarding patient autonomy and empowerment (Hui et al, 2013). Most forensic patients have committed a crime (Askola et al, 2018) or need to be cared for in a highly institutionalised and secure environment due to the complexity of their needs and risks (Tomlin et al, 2018). Structurally, there is perceivably little room for patient participation or ‘person-centredness’ (Söderberg et al, 2022).

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