Get access

A concept analysis of forensic risk


  • A. M. KETTLES bsc (nursing) msc (health psychology) rmnrgnrntpgceaamibiol

    Corresponding author
    1. ILTM, Research and Development Officer (Mental Health), NHS Grampian, Aberdeen, Scotland and Honorary Lecturer, Centre for Advanced Studies in Nursing, University of Aberdeen, Aberdeen, Scotland, UK
    Search for more papers by this author

A. McGregor Kettles
West Gask
Near Longhaven
AB42 0PH


Forensic risk is a term used in relation to many forms of clinical practice, such as assessment, intervention and management. Rarely is the term defined in the literature and as a concept it is multifaceted. Concept analysis is a method for exploring and evaluating the meaning of words. It gives precise definitions, both theoretical and operational, for use in theory, clinical practice and research. A concept analysis provides a logical basis for defining terms through providing defining attributes, case examples (model, contrary, borderline, related), antecedents and consequences and the implications for nursing. Concept analysis helps us to refine and define a concept that derives from practice, research or theory. This paper will use the strategy of concept analysis to find a working definition for the concept of forensic risk. In conclusion, the historical background and literature are reviewed using concept analysis to bring the term into focus and to define it more clearly. Forensic risk is found to derive both from forensic practice and from risk theory. A proposed definition of forensic risk is given.