Impact of an assertive community treatment model of care on the treatment of prisoners with a serious mental illness – 2018

This study aims to describe the impact of a mental health assertive community treatment prison model of care (PMOC) on improving the ability to identify prisoner needs, provide interventions and monitor their efficacy.

We carried out a file review across five prisons of referrals in the year before the implementation of the PMOC in 2010 (n = 423) compared with referrals in the year after (n = 477).

Some improvements in the identification of needs and providing interventions were detected. There was increased use of medication management and clinically significant improvement in addressing engagement with families. Monthly multi-disciplinary team face-to-face contact improved.

Meeting the needs of mentally ill prisoners is challenged by the complexity of the custodial environment. Improvements made resulted from changing the model of care, rather than adding new resources.

Brian McKenna, Jeremy Skipworth, Rees Tapsell, Krishna Pillai, Dominic Madell, Alexander Simpson, James Cavney, Paul Rouse
Australasian Psychiatry, January 15, 2018