Telenursing Intervention Increases Psychiatric Medication Adherence in Schizophrenia Outpatients

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Abstract

BACKGROUND

Promoting medication adherence is a critical issue in optimizing both physical and mental health in persons with schizophrenia. Average antipsychotic medication adherence is only 50%; few studies have examined nonpsychiatric medication adherence. Psychosocial interventions with components of problem solving and motivation have shown promise in improving adherence behaviors.

OBJECTIVES

This study examines telephone intervention problem solving (TIPS) for outpatients with schizophrenia. TIPS is a weekly, provider-initiated, proactive telenursing intervention designed to help persons with schizophrenia respond to a variety of problems, including adherence problems.

STUDY DESIGN

The authors completed objective measures of adherence to psychiatric and nonpsychiatric medications in 29 community-dwelling persons with schizophrenia, monthly for 3 months.

STUDY RESULTS

Persons receiving TIPS had significantly higher objective adherence to psychiatric medications throughout the study period, F(1, 20) =5.47, p =.0298.

CONCLUSIONS

Clinicians should consider using TIPS as an adjunct to face-to-face appointments to support adherence in persons at risk.

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