Patient perspective on observation methods used in seclusion room in an Irish forensic mental health setting: A qualitative study

Shobha Rani Shetty; Shauna Burke; David Timmons; Harry G. Kennedy; Mary Tuohy; Morten Deleuran Terkildsen


A lack of research investigating the specific role that various observational techniques may have in shaping the therapeutic relations in mental health care during seclusion warranted this study.


The aim of the study was to explore patients' experience of different methods of observation used while the patient was in seclusion.


A retrospective phenomenological approach, using semi-structured interviews, ten patients' experiences of being observed in the seclusion room was investigated. Colaizzi's descriptive phenomenological method was followed to analyse the data. Results Communicating and engaging patients in meaningful activities can be achieved via the viewing panel. The camera was considered essential in monitoring behaviour and promoting a sense of safety. Pixelating the camera may transform patient view on privacy in seclusion.


The mental health services must strive to prevent seclusion and every effort should be made to recognise the human rights of the patient. The study reveals numerous advantages when nurses actively engage in patient communication during the process of observation.

Implications for Practice

Different observation methods yield different benefits; therefore, staff education in using these methods is paramount. Empowering the patient with prior information on seclusion, engaging them in meaningful activities and proper documentation on patient engagement, supports the provision of individualised care in seclusion.

Exploring the Nurses' Perspective on Using Remote Electronic Symptom Monitoring in Clinical Decision-Making Among Patients With Metastatic Lung Cancer

Udgivelsesform Videnskabelige artikler
År 2023
Udgiver Journal of Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing