The relationship between community resources and state hospital recidivism

UMMS Affiliation

Department of Psychiatry

Publication Date


Document Type



Community Mental Health Services; Deinstitutionalization; Financing, Government; Health Expenditures; Hospitals, Psychiatric; Hospitals, State; Humans; Longitudinal Studies; Massachusetts; Mental Disorders; Patient Readmission; Survival Analysis; Utilization Review


Health Services Research | Mental and Social Health | Psychiatric and Mental Health | Psychiatry | Psychiatry and Psychology


OBJECTIVE: The authors examined the propositions that a revolving state hospital door is an inevitable consequence of deinstitutionalization and that enhancing resources for community-based care can limit this phenomenon.

METHOD: They analyzed the recidivism patterns of state hospital patients in a region of Massachusetts where, because of a federal court consent decree, the level of funding for community programs was more than twice as high as it was in other regions in the state and compared the pattern of recidivism in this region with that observed in the other areas of the state.

RESULTS: Despite the fact that the average daily state hospital census in the resource-rich region was only half that of the other regions, longitudinal data on hospital use showed that the readmission patterns were similar in all state regions.

CONCLUSIONS: The authors suggest that attributes of serious and persistent mental illness may have more effect on hospital readmission patterns than service system variables.


Am J Psychiatry. 1992 Mar;149(3):385-90.

Journal/Book/Conference Title

The American journal of psychiatry

Related Resources

Link to Article in PubMed

PubMed ID