Knowledge and Attitudes of Mental Health Professionals Regarding Informed Consent and Patient Confidentiality in Clinical Practice and Research in Udupi District

Knowledge and Attitudes of Mental Health Professionals Regarding Informed Consent and Patient Confidentiality in Clinical Practice and Research in Udupi District
Vidyashree S.V., Kumar Naveen, Kamath Rajesh, D’Souza Brayal, Ashok Lena, Kamat
Sagarika
Indian Journals, 8 August 2019; 19(2) pp 180-184
Abstract
The control of patient information regarding mental illness is a challenging issue in mental health care. Patients have the right to control and know all information concerning their health. In India, an individual’s identity is intimately connected to his or her family’s; family is integral to one’s self. This study was conducted to increase awareness among mental health professionals regarding informed consent and patient’s confidentiality protection in clinical practice and research. The findings of this study can help hospitals frame policies. The objectives of the study were to assess the knowledge(K) and attitudes(A) of mental health professionals regarding ‘informed consent’ and confidentiality protection in clinical practice and research. The study was conducted in three different phases. In phase one, a questionnaire was formulated, validated and distributed among the mental health professionals to analyze K&A regarding informed consent and confidentiality protection in clinical practice and research. In phase two, an education module was developed and distributed among healthcare professionals. In phase three, the participants were reassessed on their K&A using the same questionnaire. The results show no significant difference in the mean values (mean=7.46, SD =1.22) in both confidentiality and consent during phase one. However, after administering the education module, the mean score of knowledge and attitude towards consent and confidentiality has increased (mean=9.86, SD=0.40) compared to the pretest. It was concluded that the delivery of the education module incorporating the updated information on acts and amendments related to the mental health profession has been effective.

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