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Mckeown, Mick; Ridley, Julie; Newbigging, Karen; Machin, Karen; Poursanidou, Konstantina; Cruse, Kaaren (2014)
Publisher: Blackwell
Languages: English
Types: Article
Subjects: B700
Drawing on a national study of Independent Mental Health Advocacy we explore the social relations of independent advocacy. The study was commissioned by the Department of Health (England) and involved a case study design covering eight different geographies and service configurations, and interviews or focus groups with a total of 289 stakeholders across two phases of inquiry. This paper focuses on analysis of qualitative data relevant to the relationship between mental health care services and independent advocacy services, drawn from interviews with 214 participants in phase two of the study. Discussion of these particular findings affords insights into the working relations of independent advocacy within mental health services beset by reorganizational change and funding cuts, and increasing levels of legally sanctioned compulsion and coercion. We offer a matrix which accounts for the different types of working relationships that can arise and how these are associated with various levels of understanding of independent advocacy on the one hand, and appreciation for the value of advocacy on the other. The discussion is framed by the wider literature on advocacy and the claims by practitioners such as nurses for an advocacy role as part of their professional repertoire.
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