Substance use issues and mental health disorders often co-occur. Although there is an increasing amount of evidence for the benefits of concurrently treating mental health and substance use issues, barriers to effective treatment persist. Stigma and a fractured treatment system may result in failures to recognise that people with substance use issues require unique individualised treatment, which can have a detrimental effect on care. However, nurses are in an ideal position to engage with people who have mental health and substance use issues.
This article explores concurrent disorders as conceptualised in Canadian academic literature and practice guidelines, and reframes the nursing approach to mental health and substance use issues. It suggests a reconceptualisation of the concurrent disorders by adopting a positive health approach to improve treatment services.
Mental Health Practice. doi: 10.7748/mhp.2019.e1413Peer review
This article has been subject to external double-blind peer review and has been checked for plagiarism using automated softwareCorrespondence
Danda M (2019) Rethinking concurrent disorders: implications and future directions for nursing practice. Mental Health Practice. doi: 10.7748/mhp.2019.e1413
Published online: 29 October 2019
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