We assessed whether adult Black and minority ethnic (BME) patients detained for involuntary psychiatric treatment experienced more coercion than similar White patients. We found no evidence of this from patient interviews or from hospital records. The area (mental health trust) where people were treated was strongly associated with both the experience of coercion and the recording of a coercive measure in their records. Regarding charges of institutional racism in psychiatry, this study highlights the importance of investigating the role of area characteristics when assessing the relationship between ethnicity and patient management.
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