This prospective, sequential study compared the costs of using haloperidol or zuclopenthixol acetate for rapid tranquillisation. In the first phase, all 16 patients admitted to our psychiatric intensive care unit requiring rapid tranquillisation received haloperidol; in the second phase, all 26 such patients received zuclopenthixol acetate. Mean overall costs per patient were substantially lower in the zuclopenthixol acetate group than the haloperidol group, mainly because special nursing was used much less in the zuclopenthixol acetate group. All nursing staff preferred to use zuclopenthixol acetate rather than haloperidol. Zuclopenthixol acetate could potentially reduce the need for special nursing and produce valuable cost savings.
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