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Untreated schizophrenia in hostels for the homeless: a cause for concern?

  • M. Marshall (a1) and M. Sharpe (a1)
Extract

We report two cases from a study of Oxford hostels for the homeless of patients who were suffering from schizophrenia and are not receiving medication. After compulsory admission to hospital and treatment both showed a dramatic improvement in behaviour which was confirmed by a standardised rating scale. We discuss how hostels for the homeless have become both asylums and traps for those who suffer from schizophrenia and conclude that doctors should not under-estimate the potential benefit of anti-psychotic drug therapy even in homeless people with chronic psychosis.

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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.
References
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Baker, R. & Hall, J. N. (1988) REHAB: A new assessment instrument for chronic psychiatric patients. Schizophrenia Bulletin, 14, 97111.
Leach, J. (1979) Providing for the destitute. In Community Care for the Mentally Disabled (eds. Wing, J. K. and Olsen, R.) Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Marshall, M. (1989) Collected and neglected: Are Oxford hostels for the homeless filling up with disabled psychiatric patients? British Medical Journal, 299, 706709.
Priest, R. G. (1976) The homeless person and the psychiatric services: an Edinburgh study. British Journal of Psychiatry, 10, 233235.
Timms, P. W. & Fry, A. H. (1989) Homelessness and mental illness. Health Trends, 21, 7071.
Weller, M. Tobiansky, R. I., Hollander, D. & Ibranhimi, S. (1989) Psychosis and destitution at Christmas 1985–1988. Lancet, ii, 15091511.
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BJPsych Bulletin
  • ISSN: 0955-6036
  • EISSN: 1472-1473
  • URL: /core/journals/bjpsych-bulletin
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Untreated schizophrenia in hostels for the homeless: a cause for concern?

  • M. Marshall (a1) and M. Sharpe (a1)
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