Nav: Home

Homelessness linked to poor antipsychotic medication adherence

August 17, 2016

SFU health sciences researcher Stefanie Rezansoff has published a new study on the treatment of serious mental illnesses among people who are homeless. This is the first study to investigate adherence to antipsychotic medication in this population.

She found only 12 per cent of the 290 individuals studied were adherent to their medications at the level needed to be effective. This is despite having full drug coverage and high access to pharmacies.

"Treatment protocols recommend that patients receive these medications continuously once they're initiated, but this can be difficult to ensure when people are precariously housed," says Rezansoff. "There's a strong link between low adherence and long-term homelessness."

Serious mental illnesses such as schizophrenia are overrepresented among homeless people. When symptoms are not effectively managed, individuals are at a higher risk of hospitalization, arrest, victimization and even suicide.

The research team is currently investigating interventions to improve adherence to antipsychotic medications. Possible interventions include supported housing, prescribing long-acting injections, and initiating regular and frequent contact between patients and primary healthcare providers.
-end-
Rezansoff, a PhD candidate, conducts her research under SFU health sciences professor Julian Somers in SFU's Somers Research Group. She receives funding from the Imperial Order Daughters of the Empire and the Canadian Institutes of Health Research.

Study: http://at.sfu.ca/jwPHaK

Simon Fraser University

Related Homeless Articles:

Supportive housing improves health of formerly homeless people with HIV/AIDS
Ask Elizabeth Bowen about the intersection of homelessness and HIV/AIDS in the United States and she'll respond without hesitation, 'Housing equals health.'
Pilot project offers blueprint for addressing mental health needs of homeless children
A research team led by North Carolina State University outlines the lessons learned in a five-year pilot project that was designed to help meet the mental health needs of children in homeless families -- and could serve as a blueprint for similar efforts around the country.
The role of animal companions in the lives of homeless people
Published as 'Caring at the Borders of the Human: Companion animals and the homeless' in the book 'ReValuing Care: Cycles and Connections' (Routledge), Professor Carr's research also reveals that homeless people often show a collective responsibility for the pets and, because of the close relationship between the pet and the homeless person, a collective responsibility for homelessness itself.
Study finds some councils in London let down homeless veterans
A new study finds some local authorities in London are letting down homeless veterans.
History of TBI linked to poor outcomes for those who are homeless, have mental illness
Among homeless adults with mental illness, having a history of head injuries is associated with a greater risk of adverse health conditions, new research indicates.
More Homeless News and Homeless Current Events

Best Science Podcasts 2019

We have hand picked the best science podcasts for 2019. Sit back and enjoy new science podcasts updated daily from your favorite science news services and scientists.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

Anthropomorphic
Do animals grieve? Do they have language or consciousness? For a long time, scientists resisted the urge to look for human qualities in animals. This hour, TED speakers explore how that is changing. Guests include biological anthropologist Barbara King, dolphin researcher Denise Herzing, primatologist Frans de Waal, and ecologist Carl Safina.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#534 Bacteria are Coming for Your OJ
What makes breakfast, breakfast? Well, according to every movie and TV show we've ever seen, a big glass of orange juice is basically required. But our morning grapefruit might be in danger. Why? Citrus greening, a bacteria carried by a bug, has infected 90% of the citrus groves in Florida. It's coming for your OJ. We'll talk with University of Maryland plant virologist Anne Simon about ways to stop the citrus killer, and with science writer and journalist Maryn McKenna about why throwing antibiotics at the problem is probably not the solution. Related links: A Review of the Citrus Greening...