Nursing care plans in acute mental health nursing
Intended for healthcare professionals
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Nursing care plans in acute mental health nursing

Robert Tunmore Academic Co-ordinator, Principal Lecturer, Institute of Health Studies, University of Plymouth
Ben Thomas Director of Nursing, Somerset Partnership NHS & Social Care Trust, Principal Lecturer, Institute of Health Studies, University of Plymouth

Care plans play an important part in mental health nurses’ work, not only as a legal record of care given, but as a therapeutic tool. This article sets out the principles of good record keeping and how nurses can make them more accurate and effective

Aims and intended learning outcomes

This article promotes the care plan as a means of providing more effective care on acute inpatient units. It emphasises the use of such plans within the context of a therapeutic relationship, using the care plan as a therapeutic tool. It highlights professional standards for record keeping and sets out the legislative framework for care planning in mental health nursing.

This article aims to promote understanding of the principles of good record keeping, and to develop more effective and accurate records. After reading this article, you should be able to:

Identify ways and means of using the care plan as a therapeutic tool.

Identify professional standards for record keeping.

Understand the importance of the care plan as a legal document.

Improve your own skills in writing care plans.

Mental Health Practice. 4, 3, 32-37. doi: 10.7748/mhp2000.11.4.3.32.c1681

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