Effectiveness of a specially trained pharmacist in a rural community mental health center.
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Effectiveness of a specially trained pharmacist in a rural community mental health center.

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    • Alternative Title:
      Public Health Rep
    • Description:
      Pharmacists having training in psychopharmacology and psychiatry are being specially trained to function in community mental health centers as a resource in psychopharmacology and to provide direct care to patients. Management information data over a 3-year period from eight rural mental health clinics indicate that these pharmacists can successfully maintain large numbers of stabilized psychiatric patients within their communities. The cost of a pharmacist's services is, conservatively, one-half that of a psychiatrist's services. A followup study of the stabilized and active aftercare outpatients in the 10-county rural area in which the 8 clinics are located revealed that those patients who received all their direct care from the pharmacist were functioning at a slightly healthier level than the other aftercare patients. The pharmacist's patients indicated that they were at least as satisfied with their care as were the aftercare patients who received care from other mental health professionals. If the results of this study can be generalized to other community mental health centers in rural areas, a pharmacist can provide services effectively when psychiatrists are inaccessible or unavailable or when funds for mental health professionals are limited.
    • Source:
      Public Health Rep. 93(5):464-467
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