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Irish psychiatric absconders: characteristics and outcome

  • Elizabeth Walsh (a1), Siobhán Rooney (a2), Darina Sloan (a3), Patricia McCauley (a4), Fiona Mulvaney (a5), Eadbhard O'Callaghan (a6) and Conal Larkin (a7)...
Abstract

Absconding constitutes a significant clinical problem, leading to high levels of anxiety among staff. Ninety-five psychiatric in-patients who absconded from an Irish hospital over a period of 12 months were reviewed retrospectively. Absconders were significantly more likely to be single and compulsorily detained with a diagnosis of schizophrenia or personality disorder when compared to the remaining hospital population for that year. Common destinations included the public house and home, with most returning of their own volition within 24 hours. The rates of self-harm and violence against others are recorded.

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Copyright
This is an Open Access article, distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY) license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
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References
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Antebi, R. (1967) Some characteristics of mental hospital absconders. British Journal of Psychiatry, 113, 10871090.
Falkowski, J., Watts, J., Falkowski, W., et al (1990) Patients leaving hospital without the knowledge or permission of staff - absconding. British Journal of Psychiatry, 156, 488490.
Farragher, B., Gannon, M. & Ahmad, I. (1996) Absent without leave - can we predict those who go AWOL? The Irish Journal of Psychological Medicine, 13, 2830.
Muller, D. S. (1962) The missing patient. British Medical Journal i, 177179.
Tomison, A. R. (1989) Characteristics of psychiatric hospital absconders. British Journal of Psychiatry, 164, 368371.
World Health Organization (1978) Mental Disorders: Glossary and Guide to their Classification in Accordance with the Ninth Revision of the International Classification of Diseases (ICD–9). Geneva: WHO.
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BJPsych Bulletin
  • ISSN: 0955-6036
  • EISSN: 1472-1473
  • URL: /core/journals/bjpsych-bulletin
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Irish psychiatric absconders: characteristics and outcome

  • Elizabeth Walsh (a1), Siobhán Rooney (a2), Darina Sloan (a3), Patricia McCauley (a4), Fiona Mulvaney (a5), Eadbhard O'Callaghan (a6) and Conal Larkin (a7)...
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