Exploring Treatment Options for Schizophrenia in an Era of Social Disruption


Challenges and unmet needs that psychiatrists face when treating patients with schizophrenia have been amplified during COVID-19 and recent protests across the country.

In this webinar, three experts share their strategies for treatment, adherence, and relapse of schizophrenia in difficult times; review highlights of proposed APA guidelines for the treatment of schizophrenia with long-acting injectables (LAIs); and discuss the use of LAIs during a pandemic, as well as alternate sites of care for their administration.

Key points:

• Patients and their families should be educated on all aspects of schizophrenia management since one of the greatest barriers to adherence is lack of knowledge on benefits of treatment
• Long-acting injectables should be considered as first-line treatment of schizophrenia when appropriate due to data reflecting increased adherence and decreased relapse rates compared to oral medications
• Consider patients’ previous history of medications, tolerability, and drug efficacy in choosing long-acting injectable treatments
• Given the COVID environment, although there are risks to having patients come into clinic for long-acting injectable administration; however, there are alternate sites of care available for administration to maintain clinical benefits and increased safety (reduced risk) for patients
• Overcoming barriers to long-acting injectable therapy such as past negative experiences with injections, insurance coverage, cost, and availability of administration facilities during times of COVID are critical to ensure the best possible outcomes for patients

Dr. Alberto Augsten

Clinical Toxicologist and Psychopharmacologist

Manager of the Behavioral Health & Emergency Department Pharmacy Services

Memorial Regional Hospital

Hollywood, Florida.

Dr. Sandy Herman

Director of Behavioral Sciences for the Department of Family Medicine

State University of New York Downstate Medical Center

Brooklyn, New York

Dr. Carl Clark

President and CEO

Mental Health Center of Denver

Denver, Colorado

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Erin Crown, PA-C, CAQ-Psychiatry, and John M. Kane, MD, experts on schizophrenia
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