Saturday 21 July 2018

263 given shock therapy

Almost three-quarters of programmes were administered to patients with a diagnosis of depressive disorders, followed by 12pc suffering from schizophrenia and 8pc with mania. Stock Image
Almost three-quarters of programmes were administered to patients with a diagnosis of depressive disorders, followed by 12pc suffering from schizophrenia and 8pc with mania. Stock Image
Eilish O'Regan

Eilish O'Regan

The numbers of psychiatric patients receiving electric shock therapy remains consistent, despite the introduction of rules safeguarding those who do not give their consent.

The Mental Health Commission said 263 patients were given the treatment in 2016.

Almost three-quarters of programmes were administered to patients with a diagnosis of depressive disorders, followed by 12pc suffering from schizophrenia and 8pc with mania.

Other diagnoses included neuroses, personality and behavioural disorders and organic disorders.

Chairman of the Mental Health Commission John Saunders said: "We note that the use of [shock therapy] during 2016 remained relatively stable when compared to 2015, however the numbers are less than in 2014.

"An important factor to acknowledge is that the law changed in 2016 which means that it can now only be administered to an involuntary patient where he or she is unable to consent. Up to this, it could also be administered to involuntary patients unwilling to consent."

The majority of the therapy was administered to patients who were admitted on a voluntary basis .

Cork and Kerry does not provide the treatment and it is the only area in the country where this is the case. People who require treatment in the region must travel to other areas to receive it.

Irish Independent

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