If you are thinking about getting into prison, you may be wondering, “What is prison mental health screening?” You may be a little confused because there is no universally accepted definition for mental illness. What is this screening and why does it matter? The good news is that the prison has resources to help you. The intake screening questions include mental health questions such as whether you’re suicidal, nervous, or anxious, and how often you use drugs. It’s important to know the differences in these tests, as they’re not meant to replace one another.
According to a study published in the journal Psychiatry in Corrections, a maximum of 5.9% of inmates receiving treatment were identified by screening. However, there was little statistical difference between screening results and treatment outcomes. Inmates who reported having self-harm risk and being distressed alone were more likely to receive treatment, with a rate of 1.2 to 1.29 per cent. Despite these results, screening is not a silver bullet for prisoners.
Regardless of their crime, the prison staff wants to keep their prisoners and staff safe. Mental health screening can help prisons take extra precautions to keep them safe. If they are concerned that a prisoner is suicidal or aggressive, they may isolate them, or even administer medication. In addition to preventing violent behavior, mental health screening can also help prisons figure out which prisoners need more support and may require medical treatment.