Mental health nurses' encounters with occupational health services
Background: Staff wellbeing is vital to the functioning of the UK National Health Service (NHS). Mental health nurses with personal experience of mental illness can offer a professionally and personally informed insight into the occupational health service offered by their employer. Aims: To investigate mental health nurses’ views of occupational health provision in the NHS, based on their personal experience. Methods: A qualitative interview study using a purposive sample of mental health nurses with personal experience of mental illness. Results: Twenty-seven mental health nurses met the inclusion criteria. Thematic analysis identified three themes: comparisons of ‘relative expertise’ between the mental health nurse and the occupational health clinician; concerns about ‘being treated’ by a service at their work; and ‘returning to work’. Conclusion: Occupational health provision in mental health settings must take account of the expertise of its staff. Further research, looking at NHS occupational health provision from the provider perspective is warranted.
Published inOccupational Medicine
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