Early, intense intervention helps schizophrenics recover

Posted on October 22, 2015

The research published in The American Journal of Psychiatry suggests a new and more effective approach to mental health care, which many experts complain is sorely lacking in the United States.

“We feel that getting the right treatment at the right time is really key,” said lead researcher John Kane, professor and chairman of the department of psychiatry at The Hofstra North Shore-LIJ School of Medicine.

“That means a combination of medication and family psycho-education, supportive education and employment, and individual therapy,” Kane told AFP.

In an approach modeled after programs already in place in Australia and Scandinavia, a team of specialists “offered recovery-oriented psychotherapy, low doses of antipsychotic medications, family education and support, case management, and work or education support, depending on the individual’s needs and preferences,” said the study.

The results published were based on two years of follow-up with the patients, some of whom reported learning how to better control their reactions to hearing voices.

Those who were treated with the new approach “remained in treatment longer, and experienced greater improvement in their symptoms, interpersonal relationships, quality of life, and involvement in work and school,” compared to those given routine treatment.

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Source material from Free Malaysia Today