UMMS Affiliation

Department of Psychiatry



Document Type


Medical Subject Headings

Mentally Ill Persons; Mental Disorders; Violence; Risk Assessment


Behavioral Disciplines and Activities | Behavior and Behavior Mechanisms | Community Health | Health Services Administration | Psychiatry | Psychiatry and Psychology


Recent studies indicate that a small, but critical subgroup of psychiatric patients is involved in a disproportionately large number of violent incidents among the mentally ill. This subgroup is an appropriate focus for intensive community-based treatment programs designed to reduce violence. However, little research has been conducted on methods for identifying patients who repeatedly become involved in violent incidents. This article describes a large follow-up study in which these patients were identified using a simple screening process that is feasible for routine use. This screening process efficiently and effectively identified a small minority of patients who were at risk for repeated involvement in violence. Patients deemed “at risk” by the screening process had an average of 7 violent incidents during a six-month follow-up period. The characteristics of these patients are described, and implications of the screening tool for conducting future research, targeting individuals for more intensive treatment services, and developing violence-focused treatment programs are discussed.

Rights and Permissions

Citation: Skeem, J., Mulvey, E., Lidz, C., Gardner, W., & Schubert C (2002). Identifying psychiatric patients at risk for repeated involvement in violence: The Next Step Toward Intensive Community Treatment Programs. International Journal of Forensic Mental Health Services, 1:2, 155-170. Link to article on publisher's website



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