Ethnic variations in pathways into early intervention services for psychosis†

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Abstract

Background

Ethnic variations have previously been identified in the duration of untreated psychosis (DUP) and pathways into psychiatric services. These have not been examined in the context of early intervention services, which may alter these trajectories.

Aims

To explore ethnic differences in the nature and duration of pathways into early intervention services.

Method

In a naturalistic cohort study, data were collected for 1024 individuals with psychotic disorders accepted for case management by eight London early intervention services.

Results

Duration of untreated psychosis was prolonged in the White British group compared with most other ethnic groups. White British individuals were more likely to make contact with their general practitioner and less likely to be seen within emergency medical services. All Black patient groups were more likely than their White British counterparts to experience involvement of criminal justice agencies.

Conclusions

Variations continue to exist in how and when individuals from different ethnic groups access early intervention services. These may account for disparities in DUP.

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