Indian Journal of PsychiatryIndian Journal of Psychiatry
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Year : 2011  |  Volume : 53  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 253-257

Psychiatric morbidity in prisoners

1 Department of Psychiatry, Govt. Medical College, Amritsar, Punjab, India
2 Department of Psychiatry, M. M. Medical College Mullana, Haryana, Chandigarh, India

Correspondence Address:
Sandeep Kumar Goyal
Department of Psychiatry, CMC, Ludhiana - 141 001, Punjab
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0019-5545.86819

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Context: The prevalence of psychiatric illness in correctional settings is significantly elevated, with higher than community rates reported for most mental disorders. Aims: (1) To examine the socio-demographic profile of convicted prisoners. (2) To evaluate the prevalence of psychiatric disorders in convicted prisoners. Materials and Methods: 500 convicts were assessed for psychiatric morbidity with the help of (a) Socio-demographic proforma, (b) Pareek Udai and Trivedi G's socio-economic status scale (rural) (household schedule), (c) Kuppuswamy's economic status scale (urban) and (d) Present State Examination (PSE). Results: 23.8% of the convicted prisoners were suffering from psychiatric illness excluding substance abuse. 56.4% of the prisoners had history of substance abuse / dependence prior to incarceration. Conclusions: The results suggest that a substantial burden of psychiatric morbidity exists in the prison population of India and the burden of psychiatric illness in this vulnerable and marginalized population poses a serious challenge to psychiatrists.



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