Year: 2023 Source: Suicide and Life-Threatening Behavior. (2020), 50(5), 990-1006. SIEC No: 20230124
Objective To determine the care pathway and rate and predictors of mental health care contact within seven days of discharge from acute care following self-harm. Method In a representative cohort of adults released from prisons in Queensland, Australia, we probabilistically linked person-level, statewide ambulance, emergency department, and hospital records, both prospectively and retrospectively, and community mental health service and Medicare records prospectively, to baseline survey data. We fit multivariate modified log-linked Poisson regression models to examine the association between sociodemographic, health, and criminal justice factors and mental health care contact after self-harm. Results Of 217 discharges from acute care following self-harm, 55% (n = 119) received mental health care within seven days of discharge. Mental health care contact was associated with substance use disorder (adjusted relative risk (ARR) = 0.48; 95% CI: 0.27–0.85), dual diagnosis (ARR = 0.58; 95% CI: 0.41–0.82), physical health-related functioning (ARR = 0.98; 95% CI: 0.97–0.99), being female (ARR = 1.39; 95% CI: 1.02–1.90), being identified as at risk of self-harm by correctional authorities (ARR = 1.50; 95% CI: 1.07–2.09), and prior engagement with state-funded mental health care (ARR = 1.55; 95% CI: 1.08–2.22). Conclusion Our findings highlight the need to improve the integration of community mental health care for people who present to acute care following self-harm with a recent history of incarceration, particularly for men and those with substance use disorder or dual diagnosis.