Psychiatric Quarterly [psaq] ph077-psaq-361313 April 2, 2002 8:23 Style ﬁle version Nov. 19th, 1999
Psychiatric Quarterly, Vol. 73, No. 2, Summer 2002 (
HOW TO INCLUDE THE TRAUMA HISTORY
IN THE DIAGNOSIS AND TREATMENT
OF PSYCHIATRIC INPATIENTS
William M. Tucker, M.D.
Although the high prevalence of signiﬁcant psychological trauma among
populations of patients with serious and persistent mental illness is well-
known, and is duly recorded in initial psychiatric histories, such trauma rarely
is reﬂected in the primary (or secondary) diagnosis, and thus, rarely becomes
the focus of treatment. There are many complex reasons why the traumatic
etiology of many presenting symptoms goes unrecognized. Failure to recognize
it leads to prolonged hospitalization and to exclusion from participation
in PTSD treatments in community settings, where they are more readily
available. The author suggests some practical, general systems changes which
might lead to more effective treatment and earlier recovery for patients with
KEY WORDS: psychological trauma; treatment plan; early discharge.
Deputy Chief Medical Ofﬁcer, New York State Ofﬁce of Mental Health, and Associate
Clinical Professor of Psychiatry, Columbia College of Physicians & Surgeons.
Address correspondence to NYS Ofﬁce of Mental Health, 44 Holland Avenue, Albany,
2002 Human Sciences Press, Inc.