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Integrating Psychotropic Medication Into the Care of People With Mental Disorders in a Prayer Camp in Ghana

2015-11-02 16:23:23 | BioPortfolio

Summary

The purpose of this study is to evaluate a bundled intervention of psychotropic drugs and daily contact with a nurse for people with mental health disorders in a prayer camp and secondly to assess whether the attitudes of the prayer camp staff toward mental health disorders and conventional medicines remain the same after the intervention.

Description

The purpose of this study is to evaluate a bundled intervention of psychotropic drugs and daily contact with a nurse for people with mental health disorders in a prayer camp and secondly to assess whether the attitudes of the prayer camp staff toward mental health disorders and conventional medicines remain the same after the intervention.

In the proposed study, residents of the sanatorium at the Mount Horeb Prayer Center located in Mamfe, Ghana will be screened for psychiatric disorders by a psychiatrist. Those who are diagnosed with a psychiatric disorder requiring treatment (schizophrenia, or mood disorder) and who meet the other inclusion criteria (see below) will be randomly assigned to receive a daily dose of the appropriate psychotropic drug (according to standard procedures of care) as well as regular prayer camp treatment (intervention group) or to receive only regular prayer camp treatment (control group). After randomization, the patients in the intervention group will receive the bundled treatment for 6 weeks, while control group patients will receive regular prayer camp treatment, e.g. encouragement to pray. Psychiatrists blinded to group assignments will assess outcomes over a 6 - 8 week period. Following this, patients will be referred for continued care with health care facilities as close to their homes as possible on discharge and if they so desire. At the start of the intervention, pastors and attendants at the prayer camp will be qualitatively assessed through a semi-structured interview concerning their attributions of mental illness causation. They will be assessed -0, -6 weeks after and again -12 weeks after intervention. The investigators hypothesize that patients who receive the bundled intervention will have improved mental health outcomes and functioning and that prayer camp staff will develop more positive attitudes toward conventional medicine and will begin to conceptualize mental health disorders as treatable illnesses, rather than only as a spiritual disorder. The results will provide empirical evidence for or against an integrated model of community based care which encompasses the medical and spiritual. This is the first intervention study in Sub-Saharan Africa to promote the use of psychotropic drugs in a traditional or spiritual healing setting. Its findings may inform the implementation of national policies governing collaboration between primary health care and faith healing centers, expanding access to and improving the quality of mental health care services.

Study Design

Allocation: Randomized, Endpoint Classification: Efficacy Study, Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment, Masking: Single Blind (Investigator), Primary Purpose: Treatment

Conditions

Schizophrenia

Intervention

olanzapine, risperidone, amitryptaline, fluoxetine

Location

Mount Horeb Prayer Centre
Mamfe
Ghana
00233

Status

Completed

Source

University of Ghana Medical School

Results (where available)

View Results

Links

Published on BioPortfolio: 2015-11-02T16:23:23-0500

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