A research study reported in BMC Psychiatry ( a division of Bio-Med Central) finds heightened involvement in the US criminal justice system and cost implications for persons treated for schizophrenia.
In a study by Haya Ascher-Svanum and a team of researchers from Eli Lilly and Company, reported Jan 28, 278 (46%) of 609 participants said they had at least 1 criminal justice system encounter. They were more likely to be substance users and less adherent to antipsychotics compared to participants without involvement.
The 2 most prevalent types of encounters were being a victim of a crime (67%) and being on parole or probation (26%). The mean annual per-patient cost of involvement was $1,429, translating to 6% of total annual direct health care costs for those with involvement (11% when excluding crime victims).
Policy makers and others dealing with service systems and costs of care need to take into account this usually hidden cost per capita for this population in explaining the value of treatment programs.