Critical Issues - Program-Focussed Research and Evaluation

From: Psychiatric Services, Vol. 49, No. 10, pp. 1330-1337, October 1998

Case Management and Recidivism of Mentally Ill Persons Released from Jail

Lois A. Ventura, Ph.D.
Charlene A. Cassell, Ph.D.
Joseph E. Jacoby, Ph.D.
Bu Huang, Ph.D.

Abstract:

Objective: The study tested the hypothesis that case management provided to mentally ill offenders both in jail and after release from jail would reduce their recidivism.

Methods: A total of 261 inmates of the Lucas County (Toledo, Ohio) jail who were diagnosed with a mental disorder were tracked for three years after their release. The relationships between recidivism and diagnostic; demographic, and case management variables were examined through event history analysis.

Results: Recidivism was associated with age, employment, previous arrests, and receipt of community-based case management. Receipt of jail-based case management, although not directly related to recidivism, significantly increased the probability of receiving community-based case management. Receipt of community case management was significantly associated with a lower probability of rearrest and a longer period before rearrest.

Conclusions: This study found hopeful signs that expanding access to case management, both inside and outside jail, will help mentally ill people live in their communities and stay out of jail. This study found hopeful signs that expanding access to case management, both inside and outside jail, will help mentally ill people live in their communities and stay out of jail.

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