Debate on mental illness and violence was oversimplified

BMJ 2002; 325 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.325.7375.1300/a (Published 30 November 2002) Cite this as: BMJ 2002;325:1300
  1. Tom Clark, clinical research fellow in forensic psychiatry (thomas.clark@sbmht.wmids.nhs.uk)
  1. University of Birmingham, Reaside Clinic, Rubery, Birmingham B45 9BE

    EDITOR—The central message of Walsh and Fahy's editorial—that the contribution to societal violence of mentally disordered persons is too small to justify the apparent preoccupation of politicians and the print and broadcast media—is correct, although it is becoming hackneyed after endless repetition.1 Despite this, an established association exists between mental disorder and violence that cannot be explained by cofactors.2 Even if there were no statistical association psychiatry would still have a role when they do …

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