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Adherence to Psychiatric Treatments

William Riley, PhD1, Dawn Velligan, PhD2, Martha Sajatovic, MD3, 
Marcia Valenstein, MD4, Steven Safren, PhD5, Roberto Lewis-Fernandez, MD6, 
Peter Weiden, MD7, and Gbenga Ogedegbe, MD, MPH8

Treatment non-adherence is a common problem in a range of chronic diseases and treatments [1]. Among patients with mental disorders, non-adherence substantially compromises the effectiveness of available psychiatric treatments. In patients with schizophrenia, non-adherence can exceed 60%, with 74% being non-adherent within 2 years of hospital discharge [2,3]. Non-adherence in bipolar disorder ranges from 20% to 60% [4,5]. In major depression, 53% of patients are estimated to be non-adherent, with 45–60% discontinuing antidepressants after 3 months of treatment [6]. Non-adherence to treatments for these serious mental disorders is associated with higher rates of relapse and hospitalization, and increased healthcare costs [2,4,7–10].

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