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‘Coping Inside?’: The prevalence of anxiety and OCD amongst incarcerated young offenders and an evaluation of a one‐day CBT workshop

Helen Louise Miles, Kate Ellis & Anne Elizabeth Sheeran
Journal of Forensic Psychiatry & Psychology, Vol. 23, No. 5-6, 01 Oct 2012, Pages: 689-705.

 

Abstract

Incarcerated UK young offenders were screened and offered a one‐day low intensity (four‐hour) Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT) group workshop if they met criteria for an Anxiety and/or Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD). Sixty-six per cent of 684 (n = 451) young offenders were screened, revealing high rates of anxiety (21–43%) and OCD (73%). Despite attrition following prison issues, 106 (58% of referrals) attended a 'Coping Inside' workshop resulting in a significant decrease in participants' cognitive self-consciousness, and trends towards decreases in maladaptive beliefs about superstition and responsibility, slowness and avoidant or detached coping styles. However, the 'dose' of intervention didn't appear sufficient. Nevertheless, participants reported high satisfaction with the format, style, content and setting of the workshops, suggesting the approach was acceptable in this population. Consequently, despite the limited impact on symptoms, the format maybe a useful introduction to or promotion of more intensive group based offending behaviour or psychological treatment programmes for young offenders.

 

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