Validation of a Brief Screening Instrument for Identifying Psychiatric Disorders Among Newly Incarcerated Adults

    loading  Checking for direct PDF access through Ovid



This study sought to cross-validate a brief mental healthscreening instrument for newly incarcerated adults with undetected psychiatric impairment.


Women (N=360) and men (N=630) aged 18 to 64 years with no institutionally identified mental health condition were randomly recruited upon entry to jail. Nonclinical research staff administered the Correctional Mental Health Screen for women (CMHS-F) or men (CMHS-M). A randomly selected subsample (100 women and 106 men) subsequently completed research clinical diagnostic interviews for standardized clinical cross-validation.


Accuracy for the CMHS-F and CMHS-M (73%–80%) for the identification of current axis I or II psychiatric disorders replicated results of an instrument development study and exceeded the accuracy levels reported for alternative brief mental health screening measures with incarcerated adults. Cutoff points were identified that maximized positive or negative predictive power.


This cross-validation demonstrates that the CMHS-F and CMHS-M are efficient, accurate screens to identify newly incarcerated adults with undetected psychiatric disorders.

Related Topics

    loading  Loading Related Articles