Observation By Self – My Inspiration

OBS Observation By Self was created following a personal experience involving myself and my 12 year old (at the time) daughter. In the spring of 2009 I discovered that my daughter was suffering from severe mental health difficulties.

After the initial assessment appointment the difficulties arose that brought about OBS Observation By Self).

My daughter had spent two separate 6 month admissions to an Adolescent Mental Health Unit in our area. It was when my daughter was discharged as an out-patient that I had difficulties doing what was required of me to care for my daughter between visits with the Consultant Psychiatrist.

We were introduced to several different people and departments who were there to support my daughter, these included:

Youth Worker, Social Worker’s , Consultant Psychiatrist, Clinical Nurse, General Practitioner, Family Therapy amongst others.

We had up to six appointments a week at times, either at home or at a different location, some lasted an hour others longer. In these meetings because my daughter was so young I had to try my best to remember everything that had happened since our last appointment.

I needed to keep records on a daily basis of what my daughter was eating, how she was sleeping what her mood and anxiety levels were, did she attend social activities any incidents or episodes that occurred and record medication intake etc.

I was working at the time (I later had to resign from work to care for my daughter) and had two other adolescents to care for.

I was given no means or advice on how to do this effectively so I started with a small diary which by the end of the first month had so much information in it that I had jotted down, scribbled in corners, creased pages, and stuffed with bits of paper containing appointment cards and contacts given to us by different people including the crisis team at the hospital which was written on a piece of regular note paper! I know that the services provided are desperately strained and realised that they don’t have the capacity to cover these kinds of things, but that wasn’t helping us with the situation and so OBS Observation By Self started to be formed.

Four years later my daughter has a wonderful life and we all came through it in the end but I know there could and should have been a more efficient and effective way for us at home caring for a loved one or friend to be able to keep accurate records of all this information in one place.

I have spent the last two years creating and developing OBS Observation By Self with the intention of ensuring that patients, families, friends and carers in a similar position will benefit from the OBS Observation By self booklet which makes the organising, care and recording of patients conditions far less complicated and aid in the care and diagnosis of patients to cut down on delays in treatment, important events/episodes going undetected or forgotten and for you all to have one location for all relevant information regarding the patient. All patients can have a way to manage their condition/illness whilst being treated at home.

About the Author

dawnstevenson