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Screening and diagnostic assessment of neurodevelopmental disorders in a male prison

Jane McCarthy (Department of Forensic and Neurodevelopmental Sciences, Institute of Psychiatry, King's College London, London, UK AND East London NHS Foundation Trust, London, UK)
Eddie Chaplin (London South Bank University, London, UK And Estia Centre, South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust, London, UK)
Lisa Underwood (School of Population Health, University of Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand AND Department of Psychology and Neuroscience, Institute of Psychiatry, King’s College London, London, United Kingdom)
Andrew Forrester (Sackler Institute for Translational Neurodevelopment and the Department of Forensic and Neurodevelopmental Sciences, King’s College London, London, United Kingdom)
Hannah Hayward (Sackler Institute for Translational Neurodevelopment and the Department of Forensic and Neurodevelopmental Sciences, King’s College London, London, United Kingdom)
Jessica Sabet (Sackler Institute for Translational Neurodevelopment and the Department of Forensic and Neurodevelopmental Sciences, King’s College London, London, United Kingdom)
Susan Young (Department of Medicine, Centre for Mental Health, Imperial College London, London, United Kingdom)
Philip Asherson (Social, Genetic and Developmental Psychiatry Centre, King’s College London, London, United Kingdom)
Richard Mills (Research Autism, London, United Kingdom)
Declan Murphy (Sackler Institute for Translational Neurodevelopment and the Department of Forensic and Neurodevelopmental Sciences, King’s College London, London, United Kingdom)

Journal of Intellectual Disabilities and Offending Behaviour

ISSN: 2050-8824

Article publication date: 9 June 2015

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to identify neurodevelopmental disorders and difficulties (NDD) in a male prison. The study used standardised tools to carry out screening and diagnostic assessment of the attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and intellectual disability (ID).

Design/methodology/approach

The ADHD self-report scale, 20-item autism quotient and the Learning Disability Screening Questionnaire were used to screen 240 male prisoners. Prisoners who screened positive on one or more of these scales or self-reported a diagnosis of ADHD, ASD or ID were further assessed using the diagnostic interview for ADHD in adults, adapted Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule and the Quick Test.

Findings

Of the 87 prisoners who screened positive for NDD and were further assessed, 70 met the study’s diagnostic criteria for ADHD, ASD or ID. Most of those with NDD (51 per cent) had previously gone unrecognised and a high proportion (51 per cent) were identified through staff- or self-referral to the study.

Originality/value

The study demonstrated that improving awareness and providing access to skilled, standardised assessment within a male prison can result in increased recognition and identification of NDD.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

This study was funded by grants from Guy’s and St Thomas’ Charity (Grant Reference No. G101019) and St Andrew’s Healthcare, Northampton, UK.

Citation

McCarthy, J., Chaplin, E., Underwood, L., Forrester, A., Hayward, H., Sabet, J., Young, S., Asherson, P., Mills, R. and Murphy, D. (2015), "Screening and diagnostic assessment of neurodevelopmental disorders in a male prison", Journal of Intellectual Disabilities and Offending Behaviour, Vol. 6 No. 2, pp. 102-111. https://doi.org/10.1108/JIDOB-08-2015-0018

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2015, Emerald Group Publishing Limited