Early intervention for psychosis: why does it matter?

Early intervention for psychosis: why does it matter?

29 March 2022

What is “early intervention?” And why does it matter? A recent article in The Conversation by Orygen Professors Patrick McGorry, Andrew Thompson, Ellie Brown and Eóin Killackey explains the history of the early intervention approach, the components of what goes into early intervention, and the economic and social benefits of early intervention programs.

The approach enables young people being treated with greater care and respect, being exposed to a hopeful and optimistic culture, having family included and supported, priortising finding and maintaining work, and experiencing less stigma and trauma related to their treatment.

Research shows that early psychosis programs may incur a higher initial cost than delayed mental health care, but these programs deliver a substantial return on investment to both individuals and societies. Psychotic illnesses can be delayed or prevented, people with psychosis can return to work and enjoy good vocational and social outcomes, and some people with psychosis can manage their mental health with little or no medication.

Perhaps most important of all, these programs are extremely popular with young people and their families.