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Stalking of Psychiatrists: Psychopathological Characteristics and Gender Differences in an Italian Sample

Vincenzo M. Mastronardi, Antonella Pomilla, Serafino Ricci and Alberto D'Argenio.

International Journal of Offender Therapy and Comparative Criminology

May 2013, vol. 57, no. 5, 526-543.



Research has indicated that medical doctors and paramedics are at higher risk of being stalked than the general population. In particular, mental health care professionals alone represent one third of the victims of harassment. Because of the lack of studies in this specific sector, especially in Italy, in this study, we examined the stalking of psychiatrists by their patients, considering gender differences and the incidence of stalking in private practice and public mental health clinics in Rome. We found that the rate of stalking in private mental health settings is higher than that in public settings and that the perpetrators of stalking are mainly women who mostly target mental health professionals working in private practice. Implications of the findings are noted and discussed.




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