This topical report explores risk assessment and risk management for people being discharged from psychiatric hospital into the community. It breaks new ground by asking service users about their views on, and experiences of, posing a former or potential risk to other people. The report also includes information about the harm that service users experienced and explores the perspectives of mental health workers, relatives and friends about risks and their management.
The report makes recommendations for improving policy and practice which will be valuable to service users, their relatives and friends, mental health workers, managers and those responsible for mental health policy development and training.
Joan Langan is a Lecturer at the School for Policy Studies, University of Bristol. In addition to her research activities, she teaches social work students on the topics of mental health and community care. Dr Vivien Lindow is a freelance psychologist working from the perspective of a former mental health service user.
Introduction; The risks; Risk assessment; Discussing risk and reaching agreement; Care planning and risk assessment and management; Medication and housing issues; Conclusion.