[Patient participation in german psychiatry - a critical review]

Psychiatr Prax. 2008 Apr;35(3):111-21. doi: 10.1055/s-2007-986410.
[Article in German]


Objective: A comprehensive review of the present state and new approaches of patient participation in German psychiatry was conducted.

Methods: Literature search.

Results: Most psychiatric patients wish to be informed about their disease and treatment options and express a desire for participation in medical decisions. Patient representatives want to participate in political decisions concerning health care. There have been political and legal improvements in recent years, including the implementation of a federal government commissioner for patient issues and the publication of patients' rights. With regard to potential effects of programs promoting patient participation, there are almost no results available for German psychiatry. Pilot studies have demonstrated the feasibility of user involvement and shared decision making in mental health and have also shown favourable outcomes.

Conclusions: Until now there has been no general implementation of user involvement in all areas of German psychiatry. However, the desire of patients to participate in all levels of health care system will tend to increase within the next years. Thus, it seems important for physicians to develop new skills in order to meet the participation and information needs of their patients.

Publication types

  • English Abstract
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Depressive Disorder, Major / therapy
  • Germany
  • Health Care Reform / legislation & jurisprudence
  • Humans
  • Mental Disorders / diagnosis
  • Mental Disorders / therapy*
  • National Health Programs / legislation & jurisprudence*
  • Patient Advocacy / legislation & jurisprudence
  • Patient Education as Topic / legislation & jurisprudence
  • Patient Participation / legislation & jurisprudence*
  • Physician-Patient Relations
  • Politics
  • Psychiatry / legislation & jurisprudence*
  • Schizophrenia / therapy