med/surg nurses not identifying mental health issues

Nurses General Nursing


I am doing my practicum on a med/surg floor. I was surprised to see that a patient was not identified as having a mental health issue until he was there for 5 days. It is all documented as far as the behavior he was displaying and they even knew he was bi-polar. Have you seen this where you work? Is there not enough training available? I was told that there is an unpaid workshop available in this facility on how to deal with aggression but to me mental health is different.

I am thinking of doing an ethics paper about this and I have done searches in medline, cinhal, psyc, and on the net but I am not coming up with anything. I have seached under....ethics, psych, tertiary care, mental health, acute care, medical/surgical, general health system but not finding much of anything. The problem is out there are people just not writing about it?

I am not asking for help on my paper, just some direction might be helpful. I am really interested in learning about this.



P.S. I also posted this under psyc

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