Choose a mental health case that you have attended on your clinical placements. Please de-identify the case – no place or name identifiers. If you have not attended a case or a case you feel comfortable discussing then two cases will be provided for you to choose from. This assignment gives you the opportunity to discuss:
1) Key features of the case
2) The relevant history taking and components of the mental health examination
for that person
3) Current literature regarding the biological, social and psychological causes of
4) Current literature regarding treatment and care for that person
It is expected that you demonstrate an understanding of mental illness and the care and
treatment provided. Your work needs to be supported from both text books and current
literature. At least five journal articles are expected to be part of your literature search. The
aim is to provide recent evidence regarding practice and care provision for those with mental
Higher grades will be awarded for clear demonstration of an understanding of the
components of a mental health examination. The use of literature to support practice and a
critical evaluation of the care provided to the patient.
These are some questions to help you think about the case.
1. What are the possible provisional diagnoses for this presentation?
2. What history would you like to know and why?
3. What assessment would you do and what would you take note of and why?
PURPOSE OF THE ASSIGNMENT
The purpose of this assessment is to develop knowledge of the biological, social and
psychological factors which effect the development of mental illness. The assignment
provides the opportunity to investigate current research into a specific case of mental illness
attended in clinical practice. The assignment requires knowledge of communication
techniques, relevant literature, current practice and further care provision for those
experiencing mental illness.
Literature search for relevant information targeting communication, biological, social and
psychological causes of mental illness (directly relevant to the case chosen from practice)
Consideration of other possible causes (differential diagnoses) for the case.
Recognition of signs & symptoms and the relevant mental state examination
Knowledge of paramedic care pre-hospital management of the case
Knowledge of resources and further treatment pathways available for the individual cared
EXPECTATIONS IN EACH SECTION
The introduction to your essay should include outlining the content and key points to be
discussed and provides a brief overview of the case. The introduction should identify the key
signs and symptoms within the case and relates them to a provisional mental health diagnosis.
If using a case from your clinical practice please remember to NOT USE any place or
name identifiers. Please maintain confidentiality.
MENTAL STATE EXAMINATION:
This section sets out your mental state examination to lead on to the discussion of your
provisional diagnosis and how the clinical signs and symptoms apply.
DISCUSSION: PART1 – PROVISIONAL DIAGNOSIS & APPLYING THE MENTAL
Your discussion should include:
a supporting rationale with evidence for the provisional diagnosis,
a discussion of the key components of the mental health examination which are
relevant to the case and diagnosis,
a description of the key signs and symptoms and common characteristics which
are found within that disorder.
links to literature and the criteria used in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual
of Mental Disorders (V) (DSM V) to support the diagnosis.
PART 2 – CAUSES & MANAGEMENT
The discussion should include:
the biological, social and psychological factors which underlie the development of
evidence of current research regarding the disorder and critical discussion of the
implications for short (paramedic – pre- hospital) and long term care,
current management practices and/or therapies and discussion on their benefits
and limitations (short and long term care) which includes a
discussion of communication and rapport building techniques relevant to the
The conclusion should include:
a succinct summary of key points provided,
clear and succinct concluding statements and discussion,
and clear and succinct summary of supporting evidence.
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