The authors evaluated six acute short-stay admission wards in a
community mental health center using the sociometric Ward Atmosphere Scale.
There was an attempt to run three of the six wards as therapeutic
communities. No differences were found on Ward Atmosphere Scale dimensions
between the therapeutic communities and other types of programs, nor did
the therapeutic communities conform to an empirically derived therapeutic
community program dimension profile. Possible reasons for this failure and
its implications for community mental health centers are discussed.