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Opinion piece: the case for establishing a minimal medication alternative for psychosis and schizophrenia

Opinion piece: the case for establishing a minimal medication alternative for psychosis and schizophrenia

Cooper, Ruth E. ORCID: 0000-0002-9735-4731, Mason, John P., Calton, Tim, Richardson, John and Moncrief, Joanna (2021) Opinion piece: the case for establishing a minimal medication alternative for psychosis and schizophrenia. Psychosis. ISSN 1752-2439 (Print), 1752-2447 (Online) (In Press) (doi:https://doi.org/10.1080/17522439.2021.1930119)

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Abstract

The development of severe mental health conditions is strongly linked to our environments, particularly experiences of trauma and adversity. However treatments for severe mental health conditions are often primarily biomedical, centred around medication. In the case of schizophrenia and psychosis, this is antipsychotic medication. Although antipsychotics have been found to reduce symptoms and risk of relapse, some patients derive little benefit from these drugs, and they can lead to severe adverse effects. Subsequently a high proportion of people do not want to take antipsychotics and request an alternative. Yet in the UK and in many countries there are currently no guidelines for stopping antipsychotics or formal treatment alternatives, despite such alternatives being available in some countries. For example, in Norway and Vermont (USA), in response to pressure from service user organisations, governments have mandated the establishment of ‘minimal medication’ services. We examine whether everyone with a psychotic condition needs long-term antipsychotic treatment and evidence for alternative models of care. We recommend that healthcare providers should be encouraged to develop a psychosocial treatment package for people with psychosis or schizophrenia that provides a realistic possibility of minimising antipsychotic exposure.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: psychosis, schizophrenia, minimal medication, psychosocial treatments, antipsychotic reduction or discontinuation, alternative treatments
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Faculty / Department / Research Group: Faculty of Education, Health & Human Sciences
Faculty of Education, Health & Human Sciences > Department of Psychology, Social Work & Counselling
Last Modified: 07 Jul 2021 08:45
Selected for GREAT 2016: None
Selected for GREAT 2017: None
Selected for GREAT 2018: None
Selected for GREAT 2019: None
Selected for REF2021: None
URI: http://gala.gre.ac.uk/id/eprint/32750

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