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Chronic disease risk behaviour care for people with a mental illness: Family carer expectations

Bailey, J., Bartlem, K., Wye, P., Wiggers, J., Stockings, E., Metse, A.ORCID: 0000-0002-8641-1024 and Bowman, J. (2016) Chronic disease risk behaviour care for people with a mental illness: Family carer expectations. European Journal of Public Health, 26 (suppl_1). p. 8.

Free to read: https://doi.org/10.1093/eurpub/ckw164.006
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Abstract

Background

People with a mental illness experience an increased morbidity and mortality compared to the general population; a disparity largely due to increased chronic disease burden. Family carers are implicated as key stakeholders in mental health services, and policies outline the need to involve carers at every level of service planning and delivery; however, carer attitudes towards chronic disease risk behaviour care provision for people with a mental illness within health and community services has not previously been explored.

Methods

Family carers of people with a mental illness (N = 144), residing in New South Wales, Australia, completed a self-administered questionnaire regarding their expectations of the provision of chronic disease risk behaviour care (for nutrition, physical activity, alcohol, and smoking cessation) by four health and community services: mental health hospitals; community mental health services; general practice; and non-government organisations.

Results

Of participating carers, the majority expected each of the four services to provide care for: nutrition (56.3% - 81.1%); physical activity (65.4% - 85.9%); harmful alcohol consumption (63.0% - 83.1%); and smoking cessation (56.6% - 82.7%). Further, carers also perceived that having adequate nutrition (84.6%), engaging in adequate physical activity (91.6%), decreasing alcohol consumption (74.1%), and quitting smoking (61.9%) would positively impact mental health.

Conclusions

Participating carers perceived that improving chronic disease risk behaviours would positively impact mental health; and the majority expected the four health and community services to provide care for chronic disease risk behaviours; reinforcing the appropriateness and need for services to provide such care to all clients with a mental illness.

Key messages:

- Carers perceived improving risk behaviours would result in a positive impact on mental health for people with a mental illness; suggesting a potential for carers to support behaviour change
- Carers expect health and community services to provide chronic disease risk behaviour care for clients with a mental illness; reinforcing the need for services to provide such care for all clients

Item Type: Journal Article
Publisher: Oxford University Press on behalf of the European Public Health Association
Copyright: © The Author 2016
URI: http://researchrepository.murdoch.edu.au/id/eprint/57794
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