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Working with Families of Psychiatric Inpatients

A Guide for Clinicians

Working with the families of inpatients is one of the most important—and most challenging—aspects of practicing clinical psychiatry. Clinicians are responsible not only for the well-being of their patients but also for the education and guidance of the patient’s family. In this book, Alison M. Heru and Laura M. Drury offer a step-by-step guide to developing the skills needed to work successfully with patients’ families.

Research data, outlined in the opening chapters, demonstrate just how essential families and evidence-based family treatment are to effective patient care. Succeeding chapters use clinical case studies to illustrate the skills necessary for the assessment and treatment of the family. Psychiatric residents will enhance their knowledge of the family as a part of the patient’s social context and learn how to conduct a family meeting, common mistakes to avoid, and when to refer the family for other assistance. The authors also describe specific strategies for intervening with difficult families and for overcoming some of the fears and anxieties common among residents when they interact with patients’ families.

The authors provide valuable insights into the perspectives of families and patients and offer practical suggestions for risk management after the patient is discharged from inpatient care.

Keyed to the requirements articulated by the American College of Graduate Medical Education, this handbook is a tool no psychiatric resident can do without.

About the Authors

Alison M. Heru, M.D., is an associate professor (clinical) in the Department of Psychiatry and Human Behavior at Brown University Medical School and the director of the Marriage and Family Therapy Program at Butler Hospital. Laura M. Drury, M.S.W., L.I.C.S.W., is a senior teaching associate in the Department of Psychiatry and Human Behavior at Brown University Medical School. She is also chief of social work and codirector of the Marriage and Family Therapy Clinic at Butler Hospital.

Reviews

"Although this book is primarily written as a training manual for residents it is helpful in the work of most psychiatrists and timely in addressing the needs of families in present mental health services in the UK."

- Paul Foster - Progress in Neurology and Psychiatry

"The book is well-written, easy to read and filled with useful clinical examples. It is brief, but to the point. I would recommend it to anybody who wants to learn how to work with families of her/his patients. I also hope that this volume could be used in their teaching."

- Annals of Clinical Psychiatry

"It is excellent to read a book which addresses the important issue of providing family interventions within in-patient settings."

- Chris Mansell - British Journal of Psychiatry
Johns Hopkins University Press
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