Forensic psychiatric service in Israel: Ten years experience in an in-patient hospital unit

Robert Kimhi, Yoram Barak, Jacob Gutman, Moshe Zohar, Avner Elizur

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In 1991 legislators revised the Mental Health Act in Israel, placing responsibility for forensic psychiatric evaluations with the district psychiatrist. The aim of the present paper is to describe the changing patterns of the forensic service in Israel's largest psychiatric hospital in the light of changing legislation. In the last 15 years a psychiatric forensic team provided evaluations both in an ambulatory clinic and a special in-patient ward. All medical records of subjects referred for forensic evaluations between 1982-1992 were re-examined. Demographic, forensic and psychiatric data were recorded. During this period the service experience a 15% increase in the number of evaluations. The team tended to prefer ambulatory evaluations. During the latter part of the period studied more referrals were with a previous criminal record and less with a history of mental disorders. An increase in drug and sex crimes was noted with a corresponding decrease in property and financial offences.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)393-399
Number of pages7
JournalMedicine and Law
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1998


  • Ambulatory
  • Forensic psychiatric evaluation
  • In-patient ward


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