Gate-keeping or free choice in crisis resolution and home treatment teams

Clinical Ethics 7 (3):111-115 (2012)
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Crisis resolution and home treatment teams have been introduced into mental health care in the UK because, in general, patients do not want to be admitted to hospital, treatment at home is cheaper and in the only randomized controlled trial conducted so far there was no difference in symptomatic outcome. However, because of compulsory gate-keeping by CRHT teams, some patients no longer have the option of going to hospital if they want to. This aspect of the introduction of CRHT teams has not been discussed so far, but it certainly warrants further examination. Intervention through CRHT teams may in fact increase compulsory admissions and serious and untoward incidents, although this is not certain. Sufferers from psychosis are the patient group most likely to be compulsorily admitted to hospital and they are generally considered less responsible for serious and untoward incidents. Therefore, a possible solution could be to offer a choice to some patients, namely those with a psychotic disorder, on whether they want to be admitted or not. At least one should investigate what the consequences of this policy would be, if it were to be adopted in a test region. This example shows that in developing policies for rationing health care, it can be important to look at subgroups and not just at average results when determining the best course of action.



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The Abuse of Casuistry: A History of Moral Reasoning.Kenneth W. Kemp - 1988 - Philosophy and Rhetoric 24 (1):76-80.
Rational rationing?Bob Brecher - 2008 - Clinical Ethics 3 (2):53-54.
The problems with rule-based rationing.Mark A. Hall - 1994 - Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 19 (4):315-332.

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