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Original Research

Medical student attitudes to mental health and psychiatry: the use of a patient-experience short film

Authors:

Natalie Claire Ellis ,

Cardiff University, GB
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Munzir Quraishy,

Cardiff University, GB
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Mathew Hoskins,

Cardiff University, GB
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James Walters,

Cardiff University, GB
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Steve Riley,

Cardiff University, GB
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Liz Forty

Cardiff University, GB
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Abstract

Background: Medical student attitudes to mental illness are significantly influenced by their undergraduate educational experience. Medical education therefore has a key role to play in challenging the stigma associated with mental illness. We developed a short educational film aimed at challenging stigmatising attitudes to mental illness and explored its effects on undergraduate medical student attitudes. We hypothesised that levels of stigmatising attitudes in medical students would reduce after students viewed the educational film.

Method: We used a validated scale (Mental Illness: Clinician Attitudes, MICA) to examine undergraduate medical student attitudes to mental illness at two time points - prior to (T1) and following (T2) viewing the short film. The film focused on patient experiences and was designed to highlight personal experiences of mental illness.

Results: 92 students completed the MICA before the film and 73 students at both time points. Having a personal history of mental illness was associated with less stigmatising attitudes (t=2.4, df=87, p=0.019). Stigma scores were reduced following the film viewing (t=7.101, df=72, p<0.001).

Discussion: This study suggests that patient experience films, used as educational tools, can challenge student perceptions of mental illness and lead to a reduction in stigmatising attitudes, at least in the short term. Future studies are required to examine the longer-term effects of such educational interventions in terms of student perceptions and attitudes towards mental health and psychiatry.

How to Cite: Ellis NC, Quraishy M, Hoskins M, Walters J, Riley S, Forty L. Medical student attitudes to mental health and psychiatry: the use of a patient-experience short film. The British Student Doctor. 2018;2(1):3–10. DOI: http://doi.org/10.18573/bsdj.37
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Published on 31 Jan 2018.
Peer Reviewed

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