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Soc Psychiatry Psychiatr Epidemiol. 1998 Dec;33 Suppl 1:S95-101.

Risk reconsidered: targets of violence in the social networks of people with serious psychiatric disorders.

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Department of Social Medicine, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, USA.


Risk Reconsidered: Targets of violence in the Social Networks of People with Serious Mental illness. This exploratory analysis addresses the questions: 1) Who among the members of the social network of a person diagnosed with a major psychiatric disorder is likely to become a target of violence? 2) What kind of relationships do targets have with respondents in terms of the quality and quantity of interactions?, and 3) What are the risk factors that contribute to being a target of violence for people who are in the social networks of persons with serious mental disorders? The samples of 169 people with serious mental disorders were followed for 30 months. A logistic regression model of the risk for being a target of violence among the members of the cohort's social network reveals that both target and respondent characteristics are salient, and that mothers who live with adult children who have schizophrenia and co-occurring substance abuse bear a substantially elevated risk of becoming a target of violence, compared to other social network members. Other factors that elevate the risk for being a target of violence are being an immediate family members of the respondent, more time in residence with the respondent, and whether the respondent is financially dependent on the family. Respondents with the most mental health center visits had lower odds of committing an act or threat of violence against a social network member.

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