Improving Antipsychotic Adherence Among Patients with Schizophrenia

Savings for States

Published In: Psychiatric Services, v. 66, no. 4, Apr. 2015, p. 343-345

Posted on RAND.org on February 02, 2015

by Zachary Predmore, Soeren Mattke, Marcela Horvitz-Lennon

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This column presents findings of an analysis conducted to quantify the potential net savings to state budgets from interventions to improve adherence to antipsychotic drugs among patients with schizophrenia. Using a financial model based on published data, the authors estimated costs of direct medical care and criminal justice system involvement at state and national levels and validated it against findings from other cost studies. The model estimated an annual cost of $21.4 billion (in 2013 dollars) to Medicaid programs and other state agencies for people with schizophrenia. On the basis of data on the effect on outcomes of increased medication adherence, better adherence could yield annual net savings of $3.28 billion to states or $1,580 per patient per year. Innovations to improve adherence to antipsychotic drugs among schizophrenia patients can yield substantial savings in state budgets. States should consider interventions shown to increase medication adherence in this patient group.

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