Discipline: Healthcare Knowledge
Problems. Their capacity to identify, diagnose, and manage psychiatric illnesses are often undermined by inadequate knowledge regarding psychiatry. The study aimed to develop a psychiatric learning module and evaluate its efficacy in increasing the knowledge of common psychiatric illnesses and their management among residents.
Methods In phase I, a review of records of patients admitted in the service hospital who were referred to Psychiatry was done. Participants for phases II to IV included residents from the departments which had the most number of referrals. In phases II and III, a focus group discussion and a survey, respectively, were done to identify residents' perceived needs regarding psychiatry. Based on phases I-III, a psychiatry learning module was developed. In Phase IV, a pre-and post-intervention study design was utilized, with the intervention being the administration of the learning module. Participants' knowledge regarding common psychiatric conditions was measured using a written
examination at baseline, immediately after the module, and 3 months after the module.
Results There were 60 referrals to the Department of Psychiatry in 2011, mostly from Internal Medicine, Clinical Neurosciences, Ophthalmology-Otorhinolaryngology, and Obstetrics-Gynecology; the most common reason for referral was for evaluation and management of a primary psychiatric condition. Phases II and III identified the most common perceived reason for referral to be management of acute behavioral changes and the most common preferred topic for the learning module to be assessment and screening for psychiatric conditions. In phase IV, the participants' knowledge significantly increased from baseline both in the immediate and delayed post-module
Conclusion The development and administration of a psychiatry learning module was found to be efficacious in significantly increasing the residents' knowledge regarding common psychiatric illnesses and their management.