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'Heading up a blind alley'? Scottish psychiatric hospitals in the era of deinstitutionalization

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Vicky Long



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License (CC BY-NC 4.0).


This article examines Scottish provision of psychiatric care in the 1960s and 1970s. It demonstrates that institutional services did not rapidly disappear across the UK following the Ministry of Health's decision to shut down psychiatric hospitals in 1961, and highlights Scotland's distinctive trajectory. Furthermore, it contends that psychiatric hospitals developed new approaches to assist patients in this era, thereby contributing towards the transformation of post-war psychiatric practice. Connecting a discussion of policy with an analysis of provision, it examines the Department of Health for Scotland's cautious response to the Ministry's embrace of deinstitutionalization, before analysing Glasgow's psychiatric provision in the 1970s. At this point the city boasted virtually no community-based services, and relied heavily on its under-resourced and overburdened hospitals. Closer analysis dispels any impression of stagnation, revealing how ideologies of deinstitutionalization transformed institutional care.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Long V

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: History of Psychiatry

Year: 2017

Volume: 28

Issue: 1

Pages: 115-128

Print publication date: 01/03/2017

Online publication date: 21/10/2016

Acceptance date: 15/08/2016

Date deposited: 28/03/2018

ISSN (print): 0957-154X

ISSN (electronic): 1740-2360

Publisher: Sage


DOI: 10.1177/0957154X16673025

PubMed id: 27770055


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