Year: 2023 Source: Family Practice (2019), 621–626. doi:10.1093/fampra/cmz006 SIEC No: 20230204
Background: The incidence of self-harm in young people in primary care is increasing dramatically, and many young people who self-harm visit their GP surgery as a first point of contact for help. Objective: To explore with young people, GPs and practice nurses (PNs): (i) why young people present with self-harm to primary care and (ii) whether young people, GPs and PNs can take steps to have more helpful consultations about self-harm in GP surgeries that include self-help materials developed by young people being used to support such consultations to take place. Methods: Participatory action research with GPs, PNs and young people employed mixed methods to collect statistical and narrative data. Statistics from 285 young people's medical records were captured, including more detailed analyses of a random sample of 75 of these records. A series of 24 focus groups with a total of 45 GPs, PNs and young people, with an average number of eight participants in each group, was conducted. Statistical data were subject to descriptive and inferential analyses, and thematic analysis was applied to the transcripts from the focus groups. Results and conclusion: The type of self-harm young people presented with influenced whether they would see a GP or PN. While self-help materials were welcomed and deemed helpful, young people, GPs and PNs were ambivalent about using these in short consultations where time was an overriding constraint. More research is needed on the feasibility of adopting self-help assisted interventions in GP surgeries.