Journal article

Trajectories of psychological distress after prison release: implications for mental health service need in ex-prisoners

EG Thomas, MJ Spittal, EB Heffernan, FS Taxman, R Alati, SA Kinner

PSYCHOLOGICAL MEDICINE | CAMBRIDGE UNIV PRESS | Published : 2016

Abstract

BACKGROUND: Understanding individual-level changes in mental health status after prison release is crucial to providing targeted and effective mental health care to ex-prisoners. We aimed to describe trajectories of psychological distress following prison discharge and compare these trajectories with mental health service use in the community. METHOD: The Kessler Psychological Distress Scale (K10) was administered to 1216 sentenced adult prisoners in Queensland, Australia, before prison release and approximately 1, 3 and 6 months after release. We used group-based trajectory modeling to identify K10 trajectories after release. Contact with community mental health services in the year followi..

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Grants

Awarded by Australian National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC)


Awarded by NHMRC


Awarded by Australian Research Council (ARC)


Funding Acknowledgements

This work was supported by Australian National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) Strategic Award no. 409966, NHMRC Project Grant no. 1002463 and Australian Research Council (ARC) Discovery Project DP140102333. S.A.K. is supported by NHMRC Senior Research Fellowship no. 1078168. The authors wish to thank QCS, the Passports study interview team for assistance with data collection, and the Queensland Health Statistical Analysis and Linkage Unit for assistance with data linkage. The views expressed herein are solely those of the authors, and in no way reflect the views or policies of QCS. We wish to thank the Passports study participants for sharing their stories. Finally, we wish to acknowledge the late Professor Konrad Jamrozik for his invaluable contribution to the conception, development and implementation of the Passports study.