Today on Page One, The New York Times reported important findings of a major new study about the treatment of schizophrenia–news that all families in the maelstrom should hear and take to heart. The gist: less medications, more talk therapy and family support during the first 2 years of treatment.
From the article:
…The findings, from by far the most rigorous trial to date conducted in the United States, concluded that schizophrenia patients who received smaller doses of antipsychotic medication and a bigger emphasis on one-on-one talk therapy and family support made greater strides in recovery over the first two years of treatment than patients who got the usual drug-focused care…[Emphasis added.]
Read the entire Times article here.
Early this morning, PsychOdyssey’s Tom Pyle posted to the Times website the following response:
This good news should be no surprise to any familiar with the science of psychiatric rehabilitation and the peer-led wellness movement, as well to any paying attention to the Open Dialogue movement in Scandinavia.
That only now does such news arrive to Page One suggests the impetuosity of expectations of our American mental health care system lusting for quick and impersonal magic pill fixes of complex neurological and psychological problems.
It also shows the inordinate power of Big Pharma’s influence in 3 ways: its undue influence on the clinical trials system, its heavy handed marketing to prescribers, and its strong if subtle influence on media consciousness.
More power to holistic mental heath care, especially to talk therapy and peer self-help! Now let’s get Medicaid to pay proper rates for these.