Combined substance abuse and psychiatric disorders in homeless and domiciled patients

Merrill Herman, Marc Galanter, Harold Lifshutz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


Abstract Although homelessness in patients with combined addictive and psychiatric illness is a common problem, little has been reported about the epidemiology of homelessness in this patient population. The authors, in a study of 100 dually diagnosed patients admitted to a large metropolitan psychiatric ho!;pital, found that a large portion of patients (N = 46) were homeless at the time of admission. Alcohol and crack/cocaine were the most frequently used drugs. Interestingly, there were no significant differences on most parameters between those who were homeless and those who were not. The authors observed that among the disadvantaged, inner-city dually diagnosed, many move in and out of the homeless state, seriously compromising their chances for recovery. Self-help treatment programs were more commonly used by homeless than domiciled patients. The homeless population may therefore be amenable to treatment in 12-step groups, as are domiciled patients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)415-422
Number of pages8
JournalAmerican Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1991
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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