To evaluate the effectiveness of a psychoeducation program for Chinese clients with schizophrenia and their family caregivers.
A randomized controlled trial was conducted. Seventy-three clients with a diagnosis of schizophrenia and their caregivers (n=73) were recruited and randomized into a study (n=36) and control group (n=37). Ten psychoeducation sessions were provided to the study group. The outcomes were measured at the baseline, immediately after (post-1), six months (post-2), and 12 months after the intervention (post-3).
There were significant treatment effects across time for all client outcomes: adherence to medication (p<0.01), mental status (p<0.01), and insight into illness (p<0.01). However, no significant differences were found between groups at the post-3 measures for all client outcomes. For the caregivers, significant group differences were only detected in self-efficacy at the post-1 (p=0.007) and post-2 (p<0.001) measures, the level of satisfaction at the post-1 (p=0.033) and post-2 (p<0.021) measures, and the perception of family burden at the post-2 measures (p=0.043).
A psychoeducation intervention had positive effects on Chinese clients and their caregivers. However, these effects might not be sustained 12 months after the intervention.
Practice Implications –
To substantiate its effects, psychoeducation should be an ongoing intervention, with its outcomes constantly evaluated.