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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 199851 Find in a Library
Title: Substance Use, Health, and Mental Health: Problems and Service Utilization Among Incarcerated Women
Journal: International Journal of Offender Therapy and Comparative Criminology  Volume:47  Issue:2  Dated:April 2003  Pages:224-239
Author(s): Michele Staton; Carl Leukefeld; J. Matthew Webster
Date Published: April 2003
Page Count: 16
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This study examined the lifetime substance abuse, health, and mental health problems of a sample of incarcerated females in Kentucky, as well as their lifetime utilization of treatment services.
Abstract: Women represent the fastest growing prison population in the United States. This is due mainly to drug use and drug-related offenses. The number of women arrested for drug-related offenses increased by 82 percent from 1982 to 1991. Although the research literature contains well-documented data concerning the frequency of drug use, health problems, and mental health problems among incarcerated women, it is relatively silent about their utilization of treatment services prior to incarceration and during their prison terms. The current study presented data concerning the self-reported substance abuse, health, and mental health problems among 60 women incarcerated in the Kentucky Correctional Institution for Women. Data were also presented regarding their lifetime utilization of treatment services prior to their incarceration. Statistical analyses of this self-reported data revealed that 85 percent of the respondents reported multiple drug use in the month prior to their incarceration. The most pervasive health issues reported by the respondents included drug problems, female reproductive problems, physical injuries and accidents, and mental health problems. In terms of lifetime utilization of treatment services, 80 percent of the respondents reported seeking substance abuse treatment and about half reported seeking mental health treatment. Respondents also reported moderate use of emergency room utilization. The authors note that this research indicates that additional prison-based health, mental health, and substance abuse treatment services may be needed in order to treat problems not addressed in the community. Follow-up studies with women offenders post-release should be pursued in order to implement effective aftercare treatment services for women offenders. Tables, references
Main Term(s): Female offenders
Index Term(s): Drug abuse; Inmate treatment; Mental health; Treatment
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