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Australian and New Zealand Association of Psychiatry, Psychology and Law

Does specialised psychological treatment for sex offending reduce recidivism?

Thu, 14 Oct 2021
5:30 PM - 6:30 PM

This presentation concerns a meta-analysis by Professor Theresa Gannon and colleagues conducted. The purpose was to examine whether specialized psychological offense treatments for sex offending were associated with reductions in offense specific and non-offense specific recidivism. Staff and treatment program moderators were also explored.

The review examined 44 programs. Over an average follow up time of 76.2 months, sexual recidivism was 9.5% for treated and 14.1% for untreated individuals. This represents an absolute decrease in recidivism of 4.6% and a relative decrease of 32.6%. Overall, treatment effectiveness appeared improved when programs received consistent hands-on input from a qualified, registered psychologist and facilitating staff were provided with clinical supervision.

The findings show that such treatments are associated with robust reductions in offense specific and non-offense specific recidivism. Professor Gannon will discuss the implications for treatment providers with to regards staffing and program implementation variables for optimal recidivism reductions.

Professor Theresa Gannon is Professor of Forensic Psychology and Director of the Centre of Research and Education in Forensic Psychology at the University of Kent. Theresa’s main research interests are in the areas of arson or fire-setting and sexual offending.

Click here to access the meta-analysis.
Click here to access the presentation slides.

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