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Mental Health Problems of Prison and Jail Inmates

NCJ Number
Date Published
September 2006
12 pages
Doris J. James; Lauren E. Glaze
Publication Series
This report presents estimates of the prevalence of mental health problems among prison and jail inmates using self-reported data on recent history and symptoms of mental disorders.
The report compares the characteristics of offenders with a mental health problem to those without, including current offense, criminal record, sentence length, time expected to be served, co-occurring substance dependence or abuse, family background, and facility conduct since current admission. It presents measures of mental health problems by gender, race, Hispanic origin, and age. The report describes mental health problems and mental health treatment among inmates since admission to jail or prison. Findings are based on the Survey of Inmates in State and Federal Correctional Facilities, 2004, and the Survey of Inmates in Local Jails, 2002. Highlights include the following: Nearly a quarter of both State prisoners and jail inmates who had a mental health problem, compared to a fifth of those without, had served three or more prior incarcerations; female inmates had higher rates of mental health problems than male inmates (State prisons: 73 percent of females and 55 percent of males; Federal prisons: 61 percent of females and 44 percent of males; local jails: 75 percent of females and 63 percent of males); over one in three State prisoners, one in four Federal prisoners, and one in six jail inmates who had a mental health problem had received treatment since admission. Tables, references

Date Created: July 29, 2010