Healthcare professionals under pressure in involuntary admission processes

Susanne van den Hooff, Carlo Leget, Anne Goossensen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


The main objective of this paper is to describe how quality of care may be improved during an involuntary admission process of patients suffering from Korsakoff's syndrome. It presents an empirically grounded analysis with different perspectives on 'doing good' during this process. Family carers', healthcare professionals' and legal professionals' ways of understanding and ordering this problematic situation appear very different. This could prevent patients from getting the proper care they need, with risk of more suffering and quality of life below the minimum acceptable. All this possibly lead to immoral dehumanizing situations. Firstly, the background of our empirical study is sketched. Secondly, the different perspectives on 'doing good' are summarized and compared. Thirdly, the tensions arising from the different conceptualizations of autonomy and different types of responsibilities of the actors are clarified. A common 'doing good' during involuntary admission necessitates removal of any tensions within the relational network by weighing and balancing the different perspectives on autonomy and the resulting responsibilities. With this in mind, we propose a renewed time/action table for involuntary admission, which tends to address all patients' needs at the right time. The solution presented might help healthcare professionals, who are squeezed in between patients, family carers, legal professionals and overall rules, to create practices in which patients suffering from Korsakoff's syndrome can maintain their dignity and receive the care they need. Earlier interventions, timely and adequate diagnosis, and diminishment of tensions between the different actors by fine-tuning their paradigmatic frameworks are suggested to be part of a solution.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)177-86
Number of pages10
JournalNursing philosophy : an international journal for healthcare professionals
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2015
Externally publishedYes


Dive into the research topics of 'Healthcare professionals under pressure in involuntary admission processes'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this