Institutionalism and Schizophrenia

A Comparative Study of Three Mental Hospitals 1960-1968

This book studies the relationship between institutionalism and schizophrenia in the lives of mental patients. The authors observed schizophrenic patients in three different mental hospitals over a period of eight years. Their conclusions are important for the better management of institutions and for the future of extra-mural mental health services. The lives of long-term schizophrenic patients are strictly limited by their institutionalised environments, which often produce negative effects. For example, patients are especially vulnerable to social understimulation, reacing with apathy and withdrawal. On the positive side, symptoms such as delusions and hallucinations may actually decrease during institutionalisation. The interesting approach to the positive and negative effects of institutionalisation on schizophrenics will give this book a wide readership in psychiatry, social psychology and the social sciences as well as among social workers, nurses and occupational therapists.