Previous involuntary commitment is associated with current perceptions of coercion in voluntarily hospitalized patients
Involuntary psychiatric treatment is sometimes necessary and beneficial, but may also exert negative effects. The impact of involuntary commitment on subsequent mental health treatment experience is poorly understood. We examined whether history of involuntary commitment was associated with current perceptions of coercion in a sample of voluntarily hospitalized veterans (N = 205). In adjusted analyses, perceived coercion during the voluntary admission was significantly associated with prior history of involuntary commitment (Rate Ratio = 1.60, p = .05). Perceived coercion was also higher among participants who were married/cohabiting (Rate Ratio = 1.83, p = .01) and among those with greater functional impairment (Rate Ratio = 0.97, p = .04). Although frequently unavoidable, the current results underscore the potential negative effects of coercive practices such as involuntary commitment, and support the importance of policies that aim to minimize coercive treatment experiences among psychiatric patients. © 2005 International Association of Forensic Mental Health Services.
Zervakis, J; Stechuchak, KM; Olsen, MK; Swanson, JW; Oddone, EZ; Weinberger, M; Bryce, ER; Butterfield, MI; Swartz, MS; Strauss, JL
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