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Article
Community mental health services and the prevalence of severe mental illness in local jails: are they related
Systems and Psychosocial Advances Research Center Publications and Presentations
  • William H. Fisher, University of Massachusetts Medical School
  • Ira K. Packer, University of Massachusetts Medical School
  • Lorna J. Simon, University of Massachusetts Medical School
  • David Smith, Berkshire County House of Corrections
UMMS Affiliation
Department of Psychiatry
Date
11-15-2000
Document Type
Article
Medical Subject Headings
Adult; Bipolar Disorder; Community Mental Health Services; Deinstitutionalization; Depressive Disorder; Humans; Male; Massachusetts; Mentally Disabled Persons; Prevalence; Prisoners; Prisons; Privatization; Psychiatric Status Rating Scales; Schizophrenia
Abstract
The excessive prevalence of severe mental illness noted in correctional settings has sometimes been attributed to the inadequacy of community based mental health services. This study examines the prevalence of severe mental illness in two jails situated within catchment areas featuring markedly different levels of community mental health services. We use these settings to test the hypothesis that greater levels of services in a community are associated with lower prevalence of severe mental illness in the community's jail. An epidemiologic approach, using standardized field instruments, was used to estimate the prevalence of major mental illness in detainees arriving at the two sites over a 6-month period. The hypothesis that greater levels of mental health resources in a community would be associated with lower prevalence of mental illness in the community's jail was not supported. These findings suggest that community-based mental health services by themselves do not affect the prevalence of mental illness in jail.
Rights and Permissions
Citation: Adm Policy Ment Health. 2000 Jul;27(6):371-82.
Related Resources
Link to Article in PubMed
PubMed ID
11077701
Citation Information
William H. Fisher, Ira K. Packer, Lorna J. Simon and David Smith. "Community mental health services and the prevalence of severe mental illness in local jails: are they related" Vol. 27 Iss. 6 (2000) ISSN: 0894-587X (Linking)
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/william_h_fisher/27/