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Is adherence therapy an effective adjunct treatment for patients with schizophrenia spectrum disorders? A systematic review and meta-analysis

Gray, Richard; Bressington, Daniel; Ivanecka, Ada; Hardy, Sheila; Jones, Martin; Schulz, Michael; von Bormann, Suparpit; White, Jacquie; Anderson, Kathryn Hoehn; Chien, Wai-Tong


Richard Gray

Daniel Bressington

Ada Ivanecka

Sheila Hardy

Martin Jones

Michael Schulz

Suparpit von Bormann

Kathryn Hoehn Anderson

Wai-Tong Chien


Background Poor adherence to medication in schizophrenia spectrum disorders leads to inadequate symptom control. Adherence therapy (AT) is an intervention that seeks to reduce patients’ psychiatric symptoms by enhancing treatment adherence. We aimed to systematically review the trial evidence of the effectiveness of AT on improving clinical outcomes in these patients. Method Systematic review and meta-analysis of published RCTs. We included studies testing AT as an adjunct intervention against treatment as usual or a comparator intervention in the general adult psychiatric population. The primary outcome of interest was improvement in psychiatric symptoms. Results We included six studies testing AT in schizophrenia spectrum disorders published since 2006. A meta-analysis showed AT significantly reduced psychiatric symptoms compared to usual treatment over a follow-up period of less than 1 year. We found no significant effects of AT on patients’ adherence and adherence attitudes. Conclusions AT is an effective adjunctive treatment for people with schizophrenia spectrum disorders.


Gray, R., Bressington, D., Ivanecka, A., Hardy, S., Jones, M., Schulz, M., …Chien, W. (2016). Is adherence therapy an effective adjunct treatment for patients with schizophrenia spectrum disorders? A systematic review and meta-analysis. BMC Psychiatry, 16(1), 1-12.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Mar 31, 2016
Online Publication Date Apr 6, 2016
Publication Date Apr 6, 2016
Deposit Date Apr 13, 2016
Publicly Available Date Apr 13, 2016
Journal BMC psychiatry
Print ISSN 1471-244X
Electronic ISSN 1471-244X
Publisher Springer Verlag
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 16
Issue 1
Article Number 90
Pages 1-12
Keywords Schizophrenia, Adherence therapy, Compliance, Adherence, Systematic review, Meta-analysis, Schizophrenia-spectrum disorders
Public URL
Publisher URL
Additional Information Copy of article first published in: BMC psychiatry, 2016, v.16, issue 12


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