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Tijdschrift voor Psychiatrie 51 (2009) 4, 205 - 215

New research

Behavioural changes during forensic psychiatric treatment: a multicenter study

E. de Jonge, H.L.I. Nijman, S.M.M. Lammers

In forensic psychiatry it is essential that patients' risks of reoffending are assessed as reliably as possible. The risk assessment instrument hkt-30 assesses both static and dynamic risk factors. It is assumed that dynamic risk factors should change when a patient receives treatment.
aim To find out whether dynamic risk factors changed during the course of forensic psychiatric treatment.
method The hkt-30 was administered 984 times for forensic psychiatric patients in 3 different forensic psychiatric centres, in the period June 2003-November 2006. For 513 patients the instrument was administered at least once, for 313 this was done at least twice and for 158 patients for three years in succession. By subdividing the research group into 'new', 'old' and 'transferred' patients we were able to examine in which phase of treatment the largest changes in hkt-30 scores occurred.
results More than half the scores for dynamic risk factors, as well as the total score, declined significantly as treatment progressed, but the differences were small in absolute terms. The three subgroups of patients hardly differed from each other with regard to the degree of change.
conclusion The scores for the risk factors, assumed in theory to be changeable, seemed to become lower as the treatment progressed. However, it is not yet certain whether these lower scores were in fact directly linked to a reduction on the risk of reoffending.


keywords dynamic risk factors, forensic psychiatry, HKT-30, risk assessment