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Bundesgesundheitsblatt Gesundheitsforschung Gesundheitsschutz. 2016 Jan;59(1):98-104. doi: 10.1007/s00103-015-2262-y.

[Violence by and against people with mental illnesses].

[Article in German]

Author information

1
Klinik für Psychiatrie und Psychotherapie I, Zentrum für Psychiatrie Südwürttemberg, Zentren für Psychiatrie Baden-Württemberg, Universität Ulm Weissenau, Weingartshofer Straße 2, 88214, Ravensburg, Deutschland. tilman.steinert@zfp-zentrum.de.
2
Klinik für Psychiatrie und Psychotherapie I, Zentrum für Psychiatrie Südwürttemberg, Zentren für Psychiatrie Baden-Württemberg, Universität Ulm Weissenau, Weingartshofer Straße 2, 88214, Ravensburg, Deutschland.

Abstract

There is robust evidence for an increased risk of violence through people with psychotic disorders. Until recently this was frequently denied to prevent stigmatization. Alcohol and drug abuse equally increases the risk, while appropriate treatment reduces it drastically. Staff in psychiatric hospitals is exposed to an elevated risk of aggressive assaults. A limited number of severely ill and socially disintegrated patients accounts for these incidents, which are often recurrent. Besides patient characteristics, factors such as ward climate, staffing levels, education and attitudes of staff, and physical environment play a major role in aggressive escalations. On the other hand, mentally ill people, particularly women, are themselves at a higher risk of becoming victims of violent and non-violent crime. This also applies after correction for variables such as social status and living environment. Additionally mentally ill people are confronted with violence in the form of coercive interventions legitimised by the state (involuntary admission, involuntary treatment, freedom-restrictive measures such as seclusion or manual/physical restraint). In contrast to other countries in Central and Western Europe, involuntary outpatient treatment has never been legalized in Germany. Efforts to reduce violence and coercion in psychiatric facilities by evidence-based interventions are widespread nowadays, treatment guidelines are available.

KEYWORDS:

Coercive measures; Involuntary treatment; Mental illness; Victimisation; Violence

PMID:
26515051
DOI:
10.1007/s00103-015-2262-y
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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