Correlates of victimisation amongst people with psychosis

Soc Psychiatry Psychiatr Epidemiol. 2004 Oct;39(10):836-40. doi: 10.1007/s00127-004-0819-4.


Background: While much attention has been given to the prediction of violent offending behaviour amongst people with psychotic disorders, less attention has been given to the fact that these same individuals are often the victims of violence. In this paper, we examine victimisation amongst participants in a prevalence study of psychosis, and describe demographic and clinical correlates of victimisation. METHOD The study was based on the Australian National Survey of Mental Health and Wellbeing--Low Prevalence (Psychotic) Disorders. The participants were asked if they had been a victim of violence in the previous year. The association between selected demographic and clinical variables and being a victim of violence was examined using logistic regression.

Results: Of the 962 individuals with psychosis, 172 reported being a victim of violence in the past 12 months (17.9 %). The odds of being a victim were increased in those who: (a) were female, (b) were homeless, (c) had a lifetime history of substance abuse, (d) had been arrested in the previous 12 months, (e) had poorer social and occupational function, and (f) had higher scores on the disorganisation summary score.

Conclusions: Clinicians should remain mindful that one out of every six individuals with a psychotic disorder reports being a victim of violence in the previous year. Models of care that address issues related to symptom relief, accommodation, and exposure to high-crime areas may reduce the rates of victimisation amongst those with psychotic disorders.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Australia
  • Crime Victims / statistics & numerical data*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Psychotic Disorders*
  • Risk Factors
  • Violence / statistics & numerical data*
  • Vulnerable Populations*