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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 67712 Find in a Library
Title: ASPECTS OF MANDATORY CORRECTIONS IN THE PSYCHIATRIC HOSPITAL
Journal: MONATSSCHRIFT FUER KRIMINOLOGIE UND STRAFRECHTSREFORM  Volume:61  Issue:2  Dated:(APRIL 1978)  Pages:104-126
Author(s): P A ALBRECHT
Date Published: 1978
Page Count: 23
Type: Program/Project Evaluation
Format: Article
Language: German
Country: West Germany (Former)
Annotation: CHARACTERISTICS OF ABNORMAL OFFENDERS IN CLOSED WARDS OF MENTAL HOSPITALS, GROUNDS FOR THEIR PLACEMENT THERE, AND TREATMENT SYSTEMS ARE ANALYZED USING RECORDS AND OBSERVATIONS OF 115 INSTITUTIONALIZED WEST GERMANS.
Abstract: RECORDS INDICATE THAT LOWER CLASS INDIVIDUALS WITH SOCIALIZATION DEFICIENCIES ARE OVERREPRESENTED IN THE HOSPITAL POPULATION, SUGGESTING DOUBLE SELECTION THROUGH NEGATIVE INFLUENCES OF ENVIRONMENT AND SANCTIONING BIAS AGAINST THE POOR WHO ARE AT ONCE MAD AND BAD. MOST OF THE PATIENTS HAVE BEEN INSTITUTIONALIZED FOR COMPLETE OR PARTIAL MENTAL INCOMPETENCE (COMMONLY ONLY DUE TO MENTAL RETARDATION), ALTHOUGH STATISTICS SPEAK AGAINST GREAT POTENTIAL DANGER TO SOCIETY FROM MOST OF THESE INDIVIDUALS. THE AVERAGE STAY OF 11.8 YEARS IS MUCH LONGER THAN FOR ORDINARY PSYCHIATRIC PATIENTS; THE LENGTH OF STAY IS NOT SIGNIFICANTLY INFLUENCED BY THE TYPE OF CRIME OR THE KIND OF PSYCHIATRIC PROBLEM. DESPITE A LEGAL OBLIGATION TO PROVIDE INDIVIDUALIZED THERAPY, THE PSYCHIATRIC HOSPITAL FOR OFFENDERS IS UNDERSTAFFED, SO THAT TREATMENT CONSISTS MAINLY OF PSYCHOPHARMACEUTICALS AND ENFORCED CONFORMITY. SUCH INSTITUTIONALIZATION DOES NOT IMPROVE THE CONDITION OF MENTALLY ILL OFFENDERS, ESPECIALLY IN CASES OF MODERATE TO SEVERE RETARDATION. CHANCES OF IMPROVEMENT AND RELEASE ARE POOREST FOR PATIENTS WITHOUT OUTSIDE CONTACTS (MORE THAN HALF HAVE NONE AT ALL). MOREOVER, THE LONGER THE STAY THE WEAKER THE EXTERNAL CONTACTS AND IMPROVEMENT PROSPECTS. A SPECIAL REVIEW PROCESS INTRODUCED BY THE CRIMINAL CODE REFORM HAS BEEN INEFFECTIVE, AS THE JUDICIAL PANEL THAT INTERVIEWS INDIVIDUALS SEEKING RELEASE TENDS TO FOLLOW HOSPITAL COUNSEL WITHOUT SEEKING OUTSIDE OPINIONS DESPITE OUTDATED HOSPITAL RECORDS. IT IS EMPHASIZED THAT MANDATORY PSYCHIATRIC PLACEMENT OF OFFENDERS MUST NOT BE RESERVED FOR MARGINAL SOCIAL GROUPS AND IS NOT SUITABLE FOR RELATIVELY HARMLESS INDIVIDUALS WITH GOOD PROSPECTS FOR IMPROVEMENT. FURTHERMORE, INSTITUTIONS MUST BE ADEQUATELY FUNDED FOR DEVELOPMENT OF TREATMENT PERSONNEL AND FACILITIES. THE NEGATIVE EFFECTS OF PLACEMENT MUST BE COUNTERACTED, AND EACH PATIENT'S CASE SHOULD BE REVIEWED YEARLY BY OBJECTIVE OUTSIDE EXPERTS. UNDER EXISTING CONDITIONS, PLACEMENT IS TO BE AVOIDED WHENEVER POSSIBLE. NOTES, TABLES, AND A SAMPLE DATA COLLECTION SHEET ARE SUPPLIED. --IN GERMAN. (KMD)
Index Term(s): Correctional facilities; Correctional reform; Corrections effectiveness; Criminally insane persons; Germany; Insanity defense; Long-term care institutions; Mentally ill offenders; Offenders with Intellectual or Developmental Disabilities; Program evaluation; Psychiatric services; Rehabilitation; Social classes
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=67712

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