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Early intervention in psychosis: strengths and limitations of services

  • Brendan P. Murphy and Warrick J. Brewer

Summary

Early intervention services were established on the basis of a number of fundamental principles, including the notions that intervening in the early stages of psychosis alters illness trajectory and prognosis, that multicomponent interventions promote psychosocial recovery and reduce iatrogenic damage, and that early targeting of non-responders reduces treatment resistance. There is growing evidence of the benefits of specialised early intervention services. These include improved clinical, social and vocational outcomes, reduced in-patient stays and better engagement. Early intervention services can also significantly reduce the risk of a second episode and are highly valued by service users and carers. Duration of treatment appears to determine long-term outcome and there remains uncertainty about how long such intensive intervention should last and whether all patients need the same length of care. Budgetary constraints are pervasive and are particularly likely to affect prodrome clinics and community awareness programmes.

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Copyright

Corresponding author

Associate Professor Brendan P. Murphy, Early in Life Mental Health Service, Community Services Building, 145 Cleeland Street, Dandenong, Victoria, Australia, 3175. Email: brendan.murphy@monash.edu

Footnotes

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For a companion article and related Editorial see pp. 408–16 and 398–400, this issue.

Declaration of Interest

B.P.M. has received research support from Diabetes Australia, the Australian Heart Foundation, Eli Lilly and Sanofi; participated in clinical trials sponsored by Sanofi, Eli Lilly, AstraZeneca, Jannsen-Cilag and Lundbeck; and been a speaker for Bristol-Myers Squibb, Lundbeck and Pfizer. W.J.B. is supported by a National Health and Medical Research Council Career Development Award and the Colonial Foundation, and has received research support from Janssen-Cilag and Eli Lilly.

Footnotes

References

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BJPsych Advances
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Early intervention in psychosis: strengths and limitations of services

  • Brendan P. Murphy and Warrick J. Brewer
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