Discuss the services provided by mental health courts.

De-institutionalization has led to increased numbers of homeless and has had other unintended consequences. According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, up to 40 percent of mentally ill people have become involved in the criminal justice system. In an effort to address the traditional lack of sufficient mental healthcare in jails and prisons, mental health courts have been established, leading to decreased jail time and improved provisions of psychiatric services for mentally ill prisoners (National Alliance on Mental Illness, 1993).

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Use the Internet to examine the roles that mental health workers play in the provision of services to mentally ill populations in jails and prisons. Find at least two research articles that evaluate the success of mental health service programs for mentally ill populations in prisons. This assignment is a research paper. In paragraph form, please provide a thorough and integrated response to all questions that follow:

  • What are the services provided by mental health courts?
  • How do these services benefit the prisoners? How do these compare to the services already available through the existing criminal justice system?
  • Do the research findings support the establishment of more mental health service programs to imprisoned mentally ill populations? What can be done to improve these services further?

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