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Article   |    
Misconceptions About Use of Case Management Services by the Chronic Mentally Ill: A Utilization Analysis
Maxine Harris; Helen C. Bergman
Psychiatric Services 1988; doi:
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Community Connections, 1512 Pennsylvania Avenue, S.E., Washington, D.C., 20003

American Psychiatric Association

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Abstract

Records of service contacts made over a six-month period by 44 chronic mentally ill patients served by a private case management agency in Washington, D.C., were analyzed to assess the accuracy of common assumptions held by mental health professionals about appropriate staff-to-patient ratios, the relationship between age and chronicity and use of services, the intensity of service use over time, and similar beliefs. The results suggest that the optimum staff-to-patient ratio is about 1 to 15, that older patients require fewer service contacts than younger patients, that patients' chronicity is not related to their extent of service use, and that patients' frequency of service use does not change over time. Patients who received services at the agency and patients who were seen alone required more service contacts than patients who were seen in the community and patients who were accompanied at their service contacts by members of their support network.

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