Development of the Services Matching Instrument: A Measure to Match Inmates to Correctional and Mental Health Services

McDaniel, Brieann
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Current research has explored the interface of mental illness and criminality as well as the interactions between these two constructs. The purpose of this study was to conduct an initial examination of items and the internal consistency of clinical scales for a measure designed to assess the dual constructs of mental illness and criminality. The Services Matching Instrument (SMI), which is designed to assess traumatic history, negative affect, psychiatric symptoms, criminalness, social functioning, social networking, substance abuse and antisocial attitudes and associates, was administered to 66 adult male residents from the Lubbock County Court and Residential Treatment Center. Participants had a mean age of 29 years, were predominately Caucasian (60.7%), and half were convicted of drug and alcohol offense (e.g., driving while intoxicated, possession). The original measure consisted of 197-items and after analysis to identify poor items and reconfigure the measure 158-items remained. The remaining items all exhibit proper internal consistency and meet requirements for inclusion. The SMI can be used in forensic and correctional settings to increase the efficiency of intake procedures and effectively identify offender needs.