Sad news to be aware of, and to motivate people to advocate for early treatment programs in your area:
A new study shows that young people experiencing first episode psychosis have a much higher death rate than previously thought. Researchers analyzed data on approximately 5,000 individuals aged 16-30 with commercial health insurance who had received a new psychosis diagnosis, and followed them for the next 12 months. They found that the group had a mortality rate at least 24 times greater than the same age group in the general population, in the 12 months after the initial psychosis diagnosis. This study, funded by the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), part of the National Institutes of Health, underscores that young people experiencing psychosis warrant intensive and proactive treatments, services and supports.
The research, led by Michael Schoenbaum, Ph.D., Senior Advisor for Mental Health Services, Epidemiology, and Economics at NIMH, was published online today by Schizophrenia Bulletin.
The research team used insurance claims data to identify young people aged 16-30 who had been diagnosed with a first episode of psychosis in 2008-2009. They used data from the Social Security Administration to identify deaths in this population within 12 months of the initial psychosis diagnosis. Data on cause or manner of death were not available for this research. The 12-month mortality rate for these young people — from any cause — was at least 24 times higher than their peers in the general population. In the general United States population, only individuals over age 70 come close to a similar 12-month mortality rate.
Using the most conservative assumptions, the researchers calculated an all-cause death rate of 1,968 per 100,000 of the cohort, a rate seen only in people aged 70 and over in the general population. In addition, 62% of the cohort had at least one hospitalization and/or one emergency department visit during the initial year of care; 61% did not fill any antipsychotic prescriptions; and 41% did not receive psychotherapy.
Full story here:
Research Paper Here: