Impacts of Implementing a Forensic Treatment Mall: A Program Evaluation

Psychiatric in-patients need programming and clinical interventions to support recovery and gradual re-integration into the community. Treatment malls are designed to meet these needs by offering psychosocial, person-centred rehabilitation groups in a centralized setting. Evidence suggests this treatment model increases patient engagement, broadens social networks, and improves functioning. Given this, our hospital implemented a treatment mall in our forensic services department in 2018. Because this was a new initiative at our hospital and the lack of outcome data on treatment malls in Canada, we conducted a program evaluation to explore the effects of the treatment mall and identify possible areas of improvement. Guided by a logic model, this evaluation used a retrospective chart review. Variables of interest included patient engagement, psychotropic pro re nata (PRN) administration, recovery scores, time spent off unit, elopement, use of restraints and seclusion, and patient activity levels. We assessed whether these changed post-implementation of the treatment mall. The results provide preliminary evidence of the positive effects of the treatment mall. Patient engagement and time spent off unit increased. Maintenance of changes and long-term outcomes remain to be seen; however, this evaluation provides support for the continued use and investigation of the treatment mall for our forensic services department.

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