Revista de Saúde Pública
On-line version ISSN 1518-8787
CAVALCANTI, Maria Tavares; DAHL, Catarina Magalhães; CARVALHO, Maria Cecilia Araujo de and VALENCIA, Elie. Criteria for admission and continuity of health care in psychosocial healthcare services, City of Rio de Janeiro, Southeastern Brazil. Rev. Saúde Pública [online]. 2009, vol.43, suppl.1, pp. 23-28. ISSN 1518-8787. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0034-89102009000800005.
OBJECTIVE: To analyze the criteria used by teams for admission, referral and continuity of care among patients of the Centros de Atenção Psicossocial (CAPS - Psychosocial Care Centers). METHODS: A qualitative study with participatory evaluation was conducted in three psychosocial healthcare services of the city of Rio de Janeiro, Southeastern Brazil, in 2006. A total of 15 admitted cases and 15 referred cases were selected among the patients admitted for treatment during the six months that preceded the beginning of research. Criteria pointed out by the team to admit patients for treatment or referral were analyzed from structured guidelines. Analysis of continuity of care was based on medical records and information from the team and patients and/or family members themselves, six months after patients were admitted or referred. RESULTS: Patients admitted had psychosis (schizophrenia), history of previous admissions, poor social functioning and a small support network, patients referred had anxiety and depressive disorders, a good level of adherence to outpatient treatment, good social functioning and presence of a social network. In terms of continuity of care, eight out of 27 patients had an unknown destination. In terms of referrals, of the 13 patients referred to the network's outpatient clinics, seven continued in treatment, two returned to the centers and four had an unknown destination. CONCLUSIONS: The centers admit patients who fit into the definition of severe and persistent mental disorder. Continuity of care was pointed out as a problem, probably due to the difficulty in following patients.
Keywords : Mental Disorders [diagnosis]; Patient Admission; Continuity of Patient Care; Delivery of Health Care; Mental Health Services; Qualitative Research.