Noro Psikiyatr Ars 2017 Dec;54(4):301-306
Department of Psychiatry, Adnan Menderes University School of Medicine, Aydın, Turkey.
Introduction: The purpose of the present study was to investigate the effect of sociodemographic variables on the knowledge of, demand for, and reception of psychotherapy as a treatment modality among psychiatric outpatients.
Methods: Participants of the study were 240 psychiatric outpatients (170 females and 70 males). Data for mental health services were collected from a subgroup of 103 "experienced" patients (42.9%) having had received psychiatric help previously. All participants were administered a questionnaire containing questions about various forms of psychiatric services.
Results: Of all participants, 40.83% reported having heard of psychotherapy a few of times before, mostly (44.58%) from the media and only 3.33% from a mental health professional. Most participants with previous applications to psychiatric outpatient clinic had first received mental health service from a psychiatrist (93.2%) and at a state hospital (72.8%), and a small minority (17.4%) had subsequently received care from a psychologist. None had demanded to, but 5 patients (4.86%) had been recommended to receive psychotherapy by mental health professionals. Of these experienced patients, 20 (19.41%) have an idea that the interviews they had previously at the outpatient clinics were sort of psychotherapeutic interviews; yet, only 7 (6.79%) retained the same idea after reading the definition of appropriate psychotherapy written on the questionnaire. All of these patients declared that they have received both their medication and psychotherapy at the same time. Thus, only 2.91% of 240 participants received psychotherapy that corresponds to the given definition.
Conclusions: Findings from this study suggest that mental health care is mostly performed by psychiatrists alone, with a limited contribution by psychologists. Consequently, the choice of treatment is solely pharmacotherapy for most patients, while psychotherapy as a treatment modality is neither offered nor demanded in routine practice.