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Title: Examining the perceptions of stigma in self-harming clients in general hospital settings and clinical research portfolio
Author: McKenna, Valerie F.
ISNI:       0000 0004 2691 9664
Awarding Body: University of Glasgow
Current Institution: University of Glasgow
Date of Award: 2010
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Objectives: Previous research has identified negative staff attitudes towards patients who self-harm, as well as stigma towards mental health problems in general hospital settings. This study extended this existing research to patients who present to general hospital settings with self-harm by measuring their perceptions of stigma in comparison with a control group of other hospital patients. The study also examined whether perceived stigma was related to aspects of current psychological distress. Method: Ten patients who were admitted to hospital following an episode of self-harm and ten hospital control patients completed a demographic questionnaire, the SCL-90-R measure of current psychological distress and a purpose-designed measure of perceived stigma. Results: Mann-Whitney U-tests revealed significant differences on SCL-90-R Interpersonal Sensitivity (U=17.50, p=0.011), Paranoid Ideation (U=21.00, p=0.029) and Psychoticism (U=23.00, p=0.043), together with marginally significant differences on Depression (U=24.50, p=0.052) and Hostility (U=24.50, p=0.052), between the two groups. A significant difference in perceived stigma scores (U=16.00, p=0.009) was also identified. One-tailed Spearman’s correlations highlighted positive associations between perceived stigma and SCL-90-R Interpersonal Sensitivity (ρ=0.685, p=0.014) and Depression (ρ=0.723, p=0.009) in the self-harm group, and SCL-90-R Depression (ρ=0.596, p=0.035) and Phobic Anxiety (ρ=0.595, p=0.035) in the control group. Conclusions: The results suggested that patients who self-harm perceive higher levels of stigma in general hospital settings compared to patients presenting with other types of injury. These differences appeared to relate to aspects of current psychological distress. Further research employing larger samples would help clarify this association.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (D.Clin.Psy.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: R Medicine (General) ; BF Psychology