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An open-system approach to the mental health treatment of violent offenders


The New York State Office of Mental Health has attempted to provide mental health treatment to convicted people at a level in keeping with acceptable community standards (Joint Commission on Accreditation of Hospitals). Since April, 1977, this has been provided through a network of services which have provided both short-term inpatient psychiatric services and a full range of “community services” within the domain of the state's corrections system. To date, the system has been successful in providing services at an acceptable professional level, controlling often violent individuals, and meeting all of the inpatient hospital's security objectives. Most important, C.N.Y.P.C. has demonstrated the efficacy of a “treatment model” of organization for meeting both security and treatment needs. In addition, an open system approach to evaluating and modifying the C.N.Y.P.C. organization has been a helpful approach. These models are recommended to others in the field as fruitful and worthy of further investigation.

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Correspondence to Martin H. Von Holden M.A..

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Von Holden, M.H. An open-system approach to the mental health treatment of violent offenders. Psych Quart 52, 132–143 (1980).

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  • Mental Health
  • Open System
  • Full Range
  • System Approach
  • Treatment Model