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Comment & Response
September 2017

The Importance of a Valid Comparison Group—Reply

Author Affiliations
  • 1Centre for Mental Health and Safety, University of Manchester, Manchester, England
  • 2Centre for Integrated Register-Based Research, CIRRAU, Aarhus University, Aarhus, Denmark
  • 3National Centre for Register-Based Research, Business and Social Sciences, Aarhus University, Aarhus, Denmark
JAMA Psychiatry. 2017;74(9):973-974. doi:10.1001/jamapsychiatry.2017.1556

In Reply We thank Mota et al for their comments on our recently published article that reported on mortality risk among discharged psychiatric inpatients.1 They correctly highlighted that our observational study did not inform as to whether admission to inpatient services directly influences mortality risk after discharge. However, this was not the goal of our investigation. Instead, its purpose was to examine specific causes of death in a national cohort that yielded statistically precise relative risk estimates vs all persons without experience of psychiatric hospitalization. Thus, we conducted a purely descriptive investigation without making any inference of causality, as we clearly explained in the article.1

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