Evidence base for early intervention in psychosis services in rural areas: A critical review
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Alastair Pipkin. Evidence base for early intervention in psychosis services in rural areas: A critical review. Early Intervention in Psychiatry 2020 Jul 13
Aim: Early Intervention in Psychosis teams (EITs) are a growing entity internationally, yet they remain under-researched given challenges facing their delivery. Model adaptations include stand-alone services, a hub-and-spoke model with various bases and integrating specialist staff into existing mental health teams. The present critical review focuses on reviewing the evidence base for the delivery of EITs in rural areas, first pertaining to evidence for model adherence and second to clinically outcomes. Method: A systematic literature search was undertaken, finding 53 papers of interest. Nine papers met the inclusion criteria. A critical appraisal tool was used to consider the quality of the evidence and a narrative review of their findings is presented. Results: The five studies reporting clinical outcomes of rural EITs demonstrate positive outcomes of a hub-and-spoke and stand-alone EIT on reducing hospital admissions, psychotic symptoms and improving quality of life. One study directly comparing hub-and-spoke to stand-alone EIT found that hub-and-spoke EIT had more positive outcomes than a stand-alone service. Of the studies attempting to promote adherence to EIT model in rural areas, services show low overall adherence and report issues pertaining to funding and managerial support for practical barriers to implementation. onclusions: EIT services in rural areas may show similar positive outcomes to urban areas and adaptations to suit rural populations appear acceptable, such as using a hub-and-spoke model, though further research is required. Adherence to EIT service models in rural areas may be limited and training programmes to promote adherence benefit from managerial and financial support.
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