via Psychiatric Services A Journal of the American Psychiatric Association :
"This study provides strong empirical support for concerns raised by consumer and advocacy groups about patient safety within psychiatric settings. In a sample of patients with severe mental illness who were served by a public mental health clinic, high rates of lifetime trauma occurring within psychiatric settings were reported, including physical assault (31percent), sexual assault (8 percent)..."
"Although the findings do not address causality, there is reason to believe that the experiences documented in this study may have an adverse effect on the mental health of this vulnerable population." (emphasis mine)
Can there really be any doubt that the adverse events and traumatic nature of them has "an adverse effect on the mental health of this vulnerable population?!"
The study was partially funded by NIMH. The question that needs to be answered is, "Why is the risk of real harm to a person not part of the discussion about the best interests of those diagnosed as "seriously mentally ill?" As a society, we sentence vulnerable people to locked psychiatric facilities, where if they are assaulted or abused, they are seldom believed or defended. Far too many are assaulted and abused in psychiatric facilities and experience lasting emotional harm.
Read entire the Psychiatric Services Journal article here.