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Utilization of alcohol, drug, and mental health treatment services among American Indian adolescent detainees.

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  • 1Department of Psychiatry, University of Colorado Health Sciences Center, Denver 80220, USA. douglas.novins@UCHSC.edu

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To describe the relationship between psychiatric status and the use of alcohol, drug, and mental health (ADM) services among a sample of American Indian (AI) juvenile detainees.

METHOD:

A structured diagnostic and service use interview was administered to 150 AI youths detained in a juvenile detention center located on a Northern Plains reservation.

RESULTS:

Forty percent of AI youths with a diagnosed substance use disorder and 34.1% with a diagnosed anxiety, mood, or disruptive behavior disorder reported lifetime use of services for substance use and emotional problems, respectively. While services for substance use problems were most commonly provided in residential settings, services for emotional problems were most commonly provided in outpatient settings. Traditional healers and pastoral counselors provided services to 23.7% and 29.6% of youths who received services for substance use and emotional problems, respectively. Detained youths were more likely to receive ADM services than AI adolescents living at--large in another, comparable Northern Plains reservation community. Still, the vast majority of youths in detention who suffered from psychiatric disorders did not report use of ADM services.

CONCLUSIONS:

Detention facilities serving AI adolescents need to screen carefully for the presence of psychiatric disorders and facilitate the use of ADM services.

PMID:
10504808
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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