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Mattias Strand

PhD Student

Department and organisational affiliation:

About me

Since 2016, I am a doctoral student at the Department of Clinical Neuroscience. My thesis supervisor is associate professor Elisabeth Welch and my co-supervisors are associate professor Sanna Aila Gustafsson at Örebro University and professor Cindy Bulik at the Department of Medical Epidemiology and Biostatistics.

I also work as consultant psychiatrist at the Transcultural Centre in Stockholm, Sweden.

Research description

My doctoral thesis is about self-admission as a treatment tool for patients with severe eating disorders. Patients suffering from eating disorders often require lengthy periods of inpatient treatment only to relapse upon discharge. Unfortunately, the evidence regarding the optimal model of healthcare for these “revolving door” patients is weak. Self-admission is a novel concept whereby patients with a history of lengthy and repeated hospital admissions are offered the option to self-admit to an inpatient ward for brief periods of time because of deteriorating mental health, acute stress, lack of structure in their everyday life, loneliness, boredom, or any other reason. The purpose behind the self-admission model is to increase the availability of inpatient care for severely ill patients, to avoid repeated visits to the emergency service, and to decrease total inpatient care utilization. By encouraging participants to monitor their own mental health status and allowing them to seek help swiftly when they are feeling poorly, the delay from first signs of deterioration to admission can be minimized and full-blown relapse can be avoided, ultimately reducing the total time spent in hospital. Previous self-admission studies on patients with psychotic or bipolar disorders show promising results. Self-admission has led to increased patient engagement and improved quality of life, and clearly reduced the total time spent in inpatient care, primarily due to early help-seeking. For the first time, self-admission is now offered to patients with severe eating disorders at the Stockholm Centre for Eating Disorders. My research aims at evaluating the viability of self-admission as a treatment tool for these patients.

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