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Macarthur Violence Risk Assessment Study

Violence risk assessment is now widely assumed by policy makers and the public to be a core skill of the mental health professions and plays a pivotal role in mental health law throughout the world. Dangerousness to others is a principal standard for inpatient commitment, outpatient commitment, and commitment to a forensic hospital. The imposition of tort liability on mental health professionals who negligently fail to anticipate and avert a patient's violence to others has become commonplace. Despite the pervasiveness of violence risk assessment in mental health law, research continues to indicate that the unaided abilities of mental health professionals to perform this task are modest at best. Many have suggested that making available to clinicians statistical information on the relationships between various risk factors ...

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