POSTGRADUATE STUDIES. A new national postgraduate school in compulsory psychiatric care and forensic psychiatry is now being established by the University of Gothenburg in cooperation with Lund University. The graduate school is funded with SEK 30 million from the Swedish Research Council.
The primary applicant for the funding of the new postgraduate school is Peter Andiné, professor of forensic psychiatry at the University of Gothenburg and senior physician at Sahlgrenska University Hospital. He recognizes that there is a great need to strengthen Swedish research within this area.
“Unfortunately, there is currently no evidence for many of the methods used in compulsory care. Patients in Swedish compulsory psychiatric care and forensic psychiatry are treated against their will. As patients often cannot choose which treatment they receive, it is important that there is scientific evidence that the treatments are effective,” says Peter Andiné.
Broad knowledge base
The practice of forensic psychiatry requires a high level of professional knowledge and the ability to deal with difficult ethical issues. The new national postgraduate school in compulsory psychiatric care and forensic psychiatry will provide a broad knowledge base, through the national and international experts in several different scientific fields, who will teach postgraduate students at Swedish universities. These postgraduate students will then bring their knowledge and research to healthcare units in Sweden that provide compulsory psychiatric care and forensic psychiatric care, thereby contributing to strengthening scientific competence in compulsory care.
“We have chosen to give the school an interdisciplinary focus because the complex challenges of treating patients in today’s compulsory care are best addressed through scientific and clinical cooperation between multiple disciplines and professions. The curriculum of the postgraduate school consists of five courses and related activities over two years,” says Peter Andiné.
The graduate school is run by the University of Gothenburg and Lund University in cooperation with psychiatric and forensic psychiatric units in three regions. Three patient organizations are involved in planning and teaching, giving the school an opportunity to incorporate patients’ perspectives and experiences of compulsory care. The school will be in session on three occasions and will accommodate twenty research students per session.
“This postgraduate school has the potential to develop evidence-based compulsory psychiatric care and forensic psychiatric care in Sweden and ultimately improve and shorten compulsory care for patients,” says Peter Andiné.
The Section of Psychiatry and Neurochemistry previously had a similar postgraduate school in psychiatry.
“After many years we now have an opportunity to once again offer a high-quality postgraduate school in psychiatry, this time focusing on compulsory care and forensic psychiatry. We would not have succeeded in obtaining a grant from VR if several researchers at the section had not joined forces and, together with colleagues at Lund University and the University of Montreal, worked towards the same goal. This is going to be so much fun,” says Peter Andiné.
BY: ELIN LINDSTRÖM