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Patients' experiences of absconding from a psychiatric setting in Indonesia


Nurjannah, I and Fitzgerald, MA and Foster, K, Patients' experiences of absconding from a psychiatric setting in Indonesia , International Journal of Mental Health Nursing, 18, (5) pp. 326-335. ISSN 1445-8330 (2009) [Refereed Article]

DOI: doi:10.1111/j.1447-0349.2009.00611.x


Absconding from psychiatric institutions is a relatively common phenomenon. Yet patients' experience of absconding is a perspective that has received little attention in the West and none in Indonesia. A case study using mixed methods was undertaken in order to provide a profile of absconding events over a 1-year period in a psychiatric setting in Indonesia. In the qualitative phase of the study, in a semistructured interview, 16 patients who absconded described their experiences of absconding. Three themes of experience were identified: the call to home, hopes and realities, and us and them. The call to home theme described patients' eagerness to connect with family and others and to feel safe. Hopes and realities identified patients' hopes for happiness, which were dashed by the realities of life at home and in the hospital. The final theme, us and them, described the competing interests and different opinions of patients in relation to others including hospital staff and family. There is a need for changes to mental health policy and service provision in order to reduce the incidence of absconding in Indonesia and enable patients and their families to receive adequate support while living in the community.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:absconding, Indonesia, mental illness, patients' experiences, psychiatric institution
Research Division:Health Sciences
Research Group:Nursing
Research Field:Mental health nursing
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Provision of health and support services
Objective Field:Nursing
UTAS Author:Fitzgerald, MA (Professor Mary Fitzgerald)
ID Code:64184
Year Published:2009
Web of Science® Times Cited:12
Deposited By:Nurse Education Unit
Deposited On:2010-07-05
Last Modified:2010-07-05

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