Studies have shown that when a schizophrenic is directly confronted, they usually do not return for treatment. As a result, some psychiatrists tell their patients “half-truths” or lies such as treating patients but telling them the medication is for anxiety or dysphasia, this way patients receive adequate treatment. Ultimately the psychiatrist is doing what is best for the patient, but is it really Okay to lie to a patient? Another issue is presented during the treatment of a schizophrenic patient, occasionally a patient will ask a psychiatrist for their opinion on whether or not to pursue a lifelong dream they may have.
When this occurs, the psychiatrist is presented with the decision of whether or not to support the patient on their dream. If the psychiatrist believes the patient is not capable of accomplishing their goal because of their mental disorder, they might discourage the patient form pursuing it because if they were to pursue it and fail, it could possibly worsen the disorder. On the other hand, the psychiatrist might support the patient in heir dream, because in the situation where the patient accomplishes their goal, the condition may improve and could result in a better quality of life.
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So what should the psychiatrist do in this situation, when is it okay for the psychiatrist to decide what goes on in a patient’s life? A third issue would be the whether or not to ask a patient dealing with this disorder if they would like to write their advance directives. Advance directives are written consent of what would happen to the patient in the occasion that they lose decisional abilities, what type of treatment they would receive, etc.
Although advance directives maybe taken as a precaution and not because anything is occurring with the patient, upon being asked for these documents a patient may be caused fear which could result in worsening of the illness. So should the psychiatrist ask a patient for the advance directives knowing it may have a negative result on their health? The involvement of family in the life of a schizophrenic could be extremely beneficial, but convincing a schizophrenic to involve their family is yet another issue.