Used service utilization measures from the psychiatric case registers for an urban and a rural city in Northern Italy to identify associations with socio-demographic variables from the 1981 census in schizophrenia (SCZ) and related disorders as well as in all diagnoses. The patterns of service use were similar, except that the rural city had significantly more community contacts and had about twice the treated incidence and prevalence of SCZ. Findings reinforce previous proposals that social isolation was a mediator between socio-demographic characteristics and psychiatric morbidity (e.g., E. Hare, 1956). ((c) 1997 APA/PsycINFO, all rights reserved)
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