Outcome of Voluntary vs Involuntary Admissions in Greece over 2 years after Discharge: A Cohort Study in the Psychiatric Hospital of Attica "Dafni"

Community Ment Health J. 2022 May;58(4):633-644. doi: 10.1007/s10597-021-00865-y. Epub 2021 Aug 9.


The increasing rates of involuntary hospitalization constitute a major ethical issue in psychiatric practice. The present cohort study endeavours to investigate the relationship between patients' legal status (involuntary vs voluntary) and the outcome of their hospitalization, over 2 years after discharge. All individuals admitted in the 3rd Psychiatric Department of the Psychiatric Hospital of Attica during February 2015-February 2017 took part in the study. 64.7% of patients were compulsory admitted. Findings indicate a statistically significant improvement in global functioning and symptomatology levels from admission to discharge for all treated patients, independently of their legal status. However, readmission rates over 2 years after discharge were high (34.8% vs. 21.9% in voluntary and involuntary patients, respectively). In conclusion, psychiatric admission, irrespectively of legal status leads to clinical improvement.

Keywords: Compulsory hospitalization; Involuntary admission; Outcome; Psychiatric treatment; Symptomatology levels.

MeSH terms

  • Cohort Studies
  • Commitment of Mentally Ill
  • Greece
  • Hospitals, Psychiatric*
  • Humans
  • Patient Discharge*