Elderly Psychiatric Services
The Department of Old Age Psychiatry serves the catchment area of the London Borough of Hackney and the City of London. There are three Consultants for a catchment area of about 30.000 patients, each offering a sectorised service with their own multi-disciplinary teams.
We have a comprehensive service offering all aspects of psychiatry for the elderly including some areas of innovation. Particularly, we are able to offer dynamic and cognitive psychotherapy to older adults and recently a pilot memory clinic has been introduced as part of the service.
The GPVTS placement rotates among the three Consultants whose posts vary slightly, but fundamentally all offer experience in acute psychiatry for older adults, including the treatment of severe depression and the major psychoses. There is a 20-place day hospital which specialises in psychotherapy for older adults and which has an input from dynamic psychotherapists, art therapists and drama therapists, and which has close links with the local bereavement service. Much of our service is conducted in the community through domiciliary visits and close links with general practice. On an adjacent site is the day hospital for the demented elderly and a 16-bedded dementia assessment and respite unit. Continuing care facilities are provided on the site of the old Hackney Hospital in a new purpose built lodge where the ongoing physical needs of patients are attended to by a local general practice. A significant number of referrals are made to the Department of Old Age Psychiatry from medical and surgical wards at the Homerton Hospital and these are an important source of referrals as well as a significant opportunity to exchange expertise with colleagues.
It is envisaged that the trainee will gain understanding of the diagnosis and treatment of functional and organic psychiatric disorders in older adults. The trainee should become confident with the management of psychiatric patients in general and should become familiar with drug and ECT treatments used. They should also learn indications and conditions necessary for psychotherapeutic interventions with patients and their families.
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