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Physical Health Examinations in a Psychiatric Setting: The Interactions between Medical Doctor and Patients

DOI: 10.4236/aasoci.2018.81005, PP. 76-93

Keywords: Mental Illness, Physical Health Care, Stigma, Integrated Health Care, Interpersonal Interaction

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Abstract:

The purpose of this article is to shed light on the possible stigmatization during a physical health examination in a psychiatric setting and explore the medical doctor and patients’ perceptions of such an integrated care model. This is a qualitative case study using semi-structured interviews and observations. Empirical findings are analyzed using the theory of stigma in order to explore the role of stigmatization in an integrated care setting. The analysis finds three main themes: 1) The advantages of a safe and familiar setting, 2) To be treated as a human being—not an illness, 3) Interpersonal communication with mutual understanding can reduce stigmatization. The results show that stigmatization does occur at some points. However, both patients and the medical doctor think that the integrated care setting contributes to a successful physical health examination. This is due to the location as well as interpersonal aspects.

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