Publications & Reports

Criminal Justice Involvement after Release from Prison following Exposure to Community Mental Health Services among People Who Use Illicit Drugs and Have Mental Illness: a Systematic Review.

Stewart AC, Cossar RD, Quinn B, Dietze P, Romero L, Wilkinson AL, Stoové M
Behaviours and Health Risks, Burnet Institute, 85 Commercial Rd, Melbourne, 3004, Australia. [email protected]


Illicit drug use and mental illness are common among people in prison and are associated with higher rates of reoffending and reimprisonment. We conducted a systematic review, searching MEDLINE, Embase, and PsycINFO to January 10, 2022, for studies reporting criminal justice involvement following exposure to community mental health services among people released from jail or prison who use illicit drugs and have mental illness. Our search identified 6954 studies; 13 were eligible for inclusion in this review. Studies were separated into three broad categories based on community mental health service type. Eleven of 13 studies reported a reduction in criminal justice involvement among participants exposed to community mental health services compared to a comparison group. Findings indicate a need to expand and improve integration and referral mechanisms linking people to community mental health services after jail or prison release, alongside a need for tailored programs for individuals with complex illicit drug use and mental health morbidities.

Link to publisher’s web site


  • Journal: Journal of Urban Health
  • Published: 02/05/2022
  • Volume: 99
  • Pagination: 635-654