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

ABSTRACT 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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