A Follow-up of Chronic Patients Committed to Outpatient Treatment

North Carolina State University, Raleigh 27695.
Hospital & community psychiatry 02/1989; 40(1):52-9. DOI: 10.1176/ps.40.1.52
Source: PubMed


Data collected in a statewide study of psychiatric patients involved in civil commitment hearings in North Carolina were used to evaluate the effectiveness of outpatient commitment as a less restrictive alternative to involuntary hospitalization. Six months after the commitment hearings, outcome data for patients who were committed to outpatient treatment were compared with outcome data for patients who were released and patients who were involuntarily hospitalized. All three groups comprised patients who were chronically mentally ill, had previously been hospitalized, and had histories of medication refusal and dangerousness. Patients who were committed to outpatient treatment were significantly more likely than patients with the other two dispositions to utilize aftercare services and to continue in treatment.

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    ABSTRACT: This article briefly describes the historical conditions in the origin and development of outpatient commitment that framed the discourse on its merits and the empirical studies on its outcomes. It divides those empirical studies into two sets on the basis of the questions addressed and critically reviews them. The review pays particular attention to the latest studies that were able to randomize subjects to experimental and control conditions and that were able to offer enhanced services. Finally, this article presents issues not addressed by the empirical studies on outpatient commitment but that need to be addressed in order to understand the choice of using the law to force persons with mental illness to comply with treatment and receive services in the community.
    Psychology Public Policy and Law 01/2003; 9(1-2):8-32. DOI:10.1037/1076-8971.9.1-2.8 · 1.93 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Studied a sample of 727 civil commitment candidates both in and out of the hospital for 6 mo following their postcourt hearings to determine their postcourt dangerousness. Dangerousness was measured by dividing it into 5 legal components of behavior: type, object, frequency, weapon/means, and severity of outcome. Using data from ward charts, readmission evaluations, recommitment affidavits, and arrest and community mental health center records, Ss' dangerousness is described in terms of those 5 components. Dangerousness was also compared with the alleged dangerous behavior that brought Ss into the civil commitment process. Candidates apparently do not tend to be dangerous in the 6 mo following their court hearings. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)
    Law and Human Behavior 12/1990; 14(6):551. DOI:10.1007/BF01044881 · 2.16 Impact Factor
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