“In an ideal world that would be a multiagency service because you need everybody’s expertise.” Managing hoarding disorder: a qualitative investigation of existing procedures and practices

Katie Haighton*, Roberta Caiazza, Nick Neave

*Corresponding author for this work

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1 Citation (Scopus)
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Hoarding disorder is characterised by the acquisition of, and failure to discard large numbers of items regardless of their actual value, a perceived need to save the items and distress associated with discarding them, significant clutter in living spaces that render the activities associated with those spaces very difficult causing significant distress or impairment in functioning. To aid development of an intervention for hoarding disorder we aimed to identify current practice by investigating key stakeholders existing practice regarding identification, assessment and intervention associated with people with hoarding disorder. Two focus groups with a purposive sample of 17 (eight male, nine female) stakeholders representing a range of services from housing, health, and social care were audio recorded, transcribed verbatim and analysed thematically. There was a lack of consensus regarding how hoarding disorder was understood and of the number of cases of hoarding disorder however all stakeholders agreed hoarding disorder appeared to be increasing. The clutter image rating scale was most used to identify people who needed help for hoarding disorder, in addition to other assessments relevant to the stakeholder. People with hoarding disorder were commonly identified in social housing where regular access to property was required. Stakeholders reported that symptoms of hoarding disorder were often tackled by enforced cleaning, eviction, or other legal action however these approaches were extremely traumatic for the person with hoarding disorder and failed to address the root cause of the disorder. While stakeholders reported there was no established services or treatment pathways specifically for people with hoarding disorder, stakeholders were unanimous in their support for a multi-agency approach. The absence of an established multiagency service that would offer an appropriate and effective pathway when working with a hoarding disorder presentation led stakeholders to work together to suggest a psychology led multiagency model for people who present with hoarding disorder. There is currently a need to examine the acceptability of such a model.
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0282365
Pages (from-to)1-14
Number of pages14
JournalPLoS One
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 9 Mar 2023

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