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Crime victimization in adults with severe mental illness



Teplin, Linda A., Gary McClelland, Karen M. Abram and Dana A. Weiner
Title Crime victimization in adults with severe mental illness
Source Archives of General Psychiatry, August 2005, Vol. 62, No. 8, pp 911-921
Date 2005
Document type Journal article
Summary The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence of crime victimisation among persons with Severe Mental Illness (SMI) by sex, race and age, and compare rates with general population victimisation data. Participants in the study were sourced from agencies providing psychiatric services in Chicago and a comparison group was chosen from NCVS data. It was found that over one quarter of the SMI participants had been victims of a violent crime in the past year, which was nearly 12 times higher than the general population rate. More than 21% of the SMI sample had been victims of personal theft, and this was more than 140 times higher than the NCVS rates. The implications for treatment and mental health policy are explored and it is recommended, for example, that mental health centres, in cooperation with police, should develop skills-based prevention programs for persons with SMI. It is also recommended that clients with SMI be screened and monitored to reduce victimisation.
Keywords Victimisation; severe mental illness; SMI; prevention
Topic Victimisation