Assessing risks

Over the last 15 years, risk assessments have made it possible to greatly improve the results achieved by forensic psychiatry and in the treatment of patients detained under court orders in particular. Risk assessments analyse the risks applicable for a patient in a structured and standardised manner. The idea is for high risk patients to receive treatment and to re-enter society as low risk patients.

Diagnostics and risk assessments yield dynamic risk factors, such as: sexually unacceptable and deviant behaviour, impulsiveness, psychopath, difficulty keeping work and stress, etc. The treatment plans are put together such that they focus on the risk factors for which change is necessary. A closely involved treatment team will see whether a patient is making progress, supported by a broader circle of staff members. The different circles keep each other on the ball and alert to signs that predict risk.

Protective factors

Besides factors that increase risks, the hospital assesses protective factors too. These factors that reduce risks reduce the risk of recidivism. A good stable network, an education and job, relationships; these are all factors that reduce risk. The clinic uses SAPROF (Structured Assessment of PROtective Factors for violence risk) to analyse these protective factors. This tool also makes it possible to measure changes that occur during treatment that are predictive of violence recidivism after treatment has been completed.

Van der Hoeven Kliniek is onderdeel van De Forensische Zorgspecialisten