Evid Based Nurs 2:47 doi:10.1136/ebn.2.2.47
  • Treatment

Formal guidelines including a pill box improved medication adherence for patients with chronic mental illness

 Question Can specific, multicomponent guidelines including a compartmentalised pill box given to patients with mental illness, alone or in the presence of a family member, increase the proportion of patients who comply with their medications?


Randomised controlled trial with 2 months follow up.


An outpatient mental health clinic in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, USA.


49 patients were assessed and 39 completed the study (mean age 38.5 y, 59% women, 64% white). Inclusion criteria were chronic mental illness; current use of psychotropic oral medications; ≥18 years of age; normal intelligence; living with an adult family member; primary diagnosis of schizophrenia, bipolar I disorder, or major depressive disorder; and not currently abusing alcohol or controlled substances or receiving clozapine.


All interventions lasted 1 hour. Patients in the education only group met with a staff member who …

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