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Behav Sci Law. 1993 Summer;11(3):307-21.

Two scales for measuring patients' perceptions for coercion during mental hospital admission.

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  • 1Department of Psychiatry, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, PA 15213, USA.


Legal and extra-legal coercion are pervasive in mental hospital admission and there are sharp disputes about its appropriate role. This article presents two scales for measuring psychiatric patients' perceptions of coercion during hospital admission and reports data on these scales' internal consistency. We measure patients' perceptions of coercion by asking questions, in either an interview or questionnaire format, about their experience of lack of control, choice, influence, and freedom in hospital admission. Patients' responses to questions about their perceptions of coercion were highly internally consistent. The internal consistency of the scale was robust with respect to variation in site, instrument format, patient population, and interview procedure. Correspondence analysis was used to construct two numerical scales of perceived coercion.

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