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Adults with Behavioral Health Needs under Correctional Supervision

The Criminogenic Risk and Behavioral Health Needs Framework


To address the overlapping objectives of the corrections and behavioral health fields, a framework for integrated supervision and treatment is provided in figure 5. This figure looks at the three dimensions described throughout this paper: criminogenic risk, need for mental health treatment, and need for substance abuse treatment. The framework builds on the work previously done by the behavioral health field to parse out responsibility for how the mental health and substance abuse systems can collaboratively address the complex treatment needs of diverse groups of individuals with co-occurring disorders. Adding the third dimension of criminogenic risk is meant to help state agency administrators and all stakeholders understand the best service settings and coordinated treatment and supervision approaches to promote individual recovery while improving public safety outcomes. For the sake of simplicity and clarity, treatment needs and criminogenic risk are shown in figure 5 as dichotomous variables: either low or medium/high. This framework is a mustIn reality, they should be viewed as a continuum. read for state administrators The framework sorts individuals according to their of mental health, substance level of risk on each of these three dimensions (i.e., abuse, and corrections. This criminogenic risk, mental health needs, and substance collaboration is critical to ensure abuse needs). This sorting results in eight possible people with mental health and permutations of varying risk and need groupings. substance use issues are served within the most appropriate settings.�

In using figure 5 as a way to think about collaboration and resource allocation among the —Robert Glover, Executive three systems, note that the missed opportunities Director, National Association for diversion from the criminal justice system are of State Mental Health Program most likely to happen along the left side (lower Directors risk) of the flow chart. Administrators will see that combining groups through a downward action into eight categories presents an opportunity to categorize individuals and assign service resources to each of these groups, both in correctional facilities and in the community, which could include integrating traditional treatments/ supervision or might even include treatment and supervision collaborations not currently being conducted. The first sorting action in figure 5 occurs after assessing individuals for criminogenic risk. They are divided into low- and medium/high-risk groups.* The next sorting is to determine which individuals in those two groups have substance abuse service needs and their severity. The final sorting considers the presence and severity of mental health disorders, resulting in the eight groupings for which service resources can be considered.

*The very highest-risk population that will not be released to the community (such as individuals serving life sentences without possibility of parole and death row prisoners) are not represented in this flow chart. As discussed on page 24, these individuals will still receive the level of treatment that is constitutionally required for health care (including mental health care) and supports sound prison management.

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