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Schizophrenia and Medication Adherence

Faculty Supervisor:
Paul Lewis
Year of Project Completion:
Caitlin Linscheid


Medication adherence is a major issue for individuals with a diagnosis of schizophrenia, their families and the clinicians and therapists who work with them. Numerous studies have sought to understand the different factors that affect medication adherence, including side effects, patient-physician communication, life-style and stigma. This study sought to answer the question: Do clinicians and clients view medication adherence in the same way? Participants in the client group (individuals with a diagnosis of schizophrenia or schizoaffective disorder) were given a form with a section relating to their own medication adherence behaviors as well as a section relating to the medication adherence behaviors of others. Clinicians were asked about their clients’ behaviors. Clinicians’ ratings of different variables were significantly higher than clients’ ratings (both for themselves and for other people), indicating a need for increased communication between clients and clinicians about the extent of medication non-adherence and its causes. Additionally, clients rated other people as less adherent than themselves, suggesting a disjunct between the perception and the actual occurrence of medication non-adherence.

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As the first Mennonite college founded in North America, Bethel College celebrates a tradition of progressive Christian liberal arts education, diversity within community, and lifelong learning.