Today was another site visits. We went to Khon Kaen Rajanagarindra Psychiatric Hospital. However, before going to the hospital we had a small session about the meaning of mental health. Our instructor for the day told us that positive mental health is when people can control their emotions and they are happy overall with an absence of mental illness. Mental illness involves changes in thinking, behavior, or emotions. In addition, it could be caused by distress or functioning problems with family, work, or social events. Moreover, all the students did a little presentation on the risk factors within the different age groups.
The Rajanagarindra Psychiatric Hospital was constructed in 1968 and opened in 1971. The hospital has 2020 beds and it has five wards. These wards consist of an education and research center, mental health center, suicide prevention center, mind remedy center, and recovery center. The five most common diseases within the hospital are schizophrenia, anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder, and alcohol related diseases. The most common illness is schizophrenia which encompasses approximately 80% of the patients in the hospital.
One thing that the hospital strives for is strengthening protective factors. For instance, prevention can be strengthened by encouraging protective factors such as strong personal relationships, a personal belief system, and positive coping strategies. The hospital is dedicated to providing excellent, national-level services for suicide prevention and assistance for people who are at risk of suicide. There are three different severity level classified in the hospital. The first and most common level is the mild level. In this level, the staff tries to encourage their patients and use continuous drug use for the illness. The next level is the moderate level. Within this level, the staff uses counseling, satir therapy, and psychotherapy. The last level is the severe level. There is close supervision to admit in this level. In addition, the staff may give injections and use electroconvulsive therapy. Once their patients are sent home, the staff would follow up with them every month for six months.
After the small lecture, it was time to walk around the hospital. Our first stop was to one of the men’s wards. As it turned out, there are four men wards and one female ward. The staff mentioned that the reason for this is because they have more male patients and the males tend to be more aggressive. As for the female’s ward, I noticed that the women were more social with each other. Also, as we were moving through the female’s ward, one of the patients came out and talked to us. She was very polite and friendly. I have never been to a psychiatric hospital before; therefore, I do not have much to compare back in the United States. However, it was a good site visit overall.