Managing risk: Clinical decision-making in mental health services

Eimear Muir-Cochrane, Adam Gerace, Krista Mosel, Debra O'Kane, Patricia Barkway, David Curren, Candice Oster

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    20 Citations (Scopus)


    Risk assessment and management is a major component of contemporary mental health practice. Risk assessment in health care exists within contemporary perspectives of management and risk aversive practices in health care. This has led to much discussion about the best approach to assessing possible risks posed by people with mental health problems. In addition, researchers and commentators have expressed concern that clinical practice is being dominated by managerial models of risk management at the expense of meeting the patient's health and social care needs. The purpose of the present study is to investigate the risk assessment practices of a multidisciplinary mental health service. Findings indicate that mental health professionals draw on both managerial and therapeutic approaches to risk management, integrating these approaches into their clinical practice. Rather than being dominated by managerial concerns regarding risk, the participants demonstrate professional autonomy and concern for the needs of their clients.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)726-734
    Number of pages9
    JournalIssues in Mental Health Nursing
    Issue number12
    Publication statusPublished - 16 Nov 2011


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