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Cognitive-behavioral therapy for schizophrenia: A review
This article describes the role that cognitive behavioral therapy has as an adjunct antipsychotic medication and remediative approaches such as social skills training in the management of residual symptoms of chronic schizophrenia. The article mentions that CBT can be combined with family therapy and assertive community treatment programs to reduce relapse and that ACT could complement the delivery of individual CBT.
Turkington, D., Dudley, R., Warman, D.M., & Beck, A.T. (2004). Cognitive-behavioral therapy for schizophrenia: A review. Journal of Psychiatric Practice, 10 (1), 5-16.
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Psychosocial treatments for schizophrenia
This book chapter provides an overview of schizophrenia and the status of psychosocial treatments for schizophrenia (i.e., therapeutic relationship and supportive therapy; behavior therapy and social learning programs; cognitive behavioral therapy; structured, educational family interventions; vocational rehabilitation; case management and treatment teams). The author includes additional considerations for those with a dual diagnosis (substance use and mental disorders) as well as future directions of other treatments such as cognitive rehabilitation. The authors summarize that multiple psychosocial treatment modalities must be delivered to patients if their multidimensional needs are to be met. They conclude that these treatments are most efficacious when delivered in a continuous, comprehensive, and well-coordinated manner within a service such as assertive community treatment.
Kopelowicz, A., Liberman, R.P., & Zarate, R. (2007). Psychosocial treatments for schizophrenia. In Nathan, P. E., & Gorman, J. M. A guide to treatments that work (pp.243-269). Oxford University Press, USA.
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Reaching out: the psychology of assertive outreach.
This book is a collection of chapters that all aim to examine psychological processes involved in assertive outreach. The introduction provides definitions and the evolution of assertive outreach. “Assertive outreach is a flexible and creative client-centred approach to engaging service users in a practical delivery of a wide range of services to meet the complex health and social needs and wants. It is a strategy that requires service providers to take an active role, working with service users, to secure resources and choices in treatment, rehabilitation, psychosocial support, functional and practical help, and advocacy...in equal priorities. (Joint Statement by SCMH, CMHSD, IMPACT, TULIP, North Birmingham AO Service, Kush Housing Association, The Working Together in London Initiative, 1999). It includes the origins of assertive outreach from Training and Community Living (TCL) to Assertive Community Treatment (ACT) and the Programme for Assertive Community Treatment (PACT), as well as differentiates psychological skills and psychological therapy in assertive outreach. It emphasizes the neglect of psychological therapies within ACT and how this neglect has caused ACT to drift from its original psychosocial philosophy of care and to be perceived to promote the medical model. The first half of the book outlines a psychological approach to the task of assertive outreach, beginning with the primary task of engaging service users. The second half of the book is devoted to the task of delivering psychological therapies.
Cupitt, C. (2010). Reaching out: the psychology of assertive outreach. Routledge.
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The 2009 schizophrenia PORT psychosocial treatment recommendations and summary statements.
The Schizophrenia Patient Outcomes Research Team (PORT) psychosocial treatment recommendations provide a comprehensive summary of current evidence-based psychosocial treatment interventions for persons with schizophrenia. This article reports the third set of PORT recommendations that includes updated reviews in 7 areas as well as adding 5 new areas of review. Members of the psychosocial Evidence Review Group conducted reviews of the literature in each intervention area and drafted the recommendation or summary statement with supporting discussion. A Psychosocial Advisory Committee was consulted in all aspects of the review, and an expert panel commented on draft recommendations and summary statements. The review process produced 8 treatment recommendations in the following areas: assertive community treatment, supported employment, cognitive behavioral therapy, family-based services, token economy, skills training, psychosocial interventions for alcohol and substance use disorders, and psychosocial interventions for weight management. Reviews of treatments focused on medication adherence, cognitive remediation, psychosocial treatments for recent onset schizophrenia, and peer support and peer delivered services indicated that none of these treatment areas yet have enough evidence to merit a treatment recommendation, though each is an emerging area of interest. This update of PORT psychosocial treatment recommendations underscores both the expansion of knowledge regarding psychosocial treatments for persons with schizophrenia at the same time as the limitations in their implementation in clinical practice settings.
Dixon, L. B., Dickerson, F., Bellack, A. S., Bennett, M., Dickinson, D., Goldberg, R. W.,...& Kreyenbuhl, J. (2010). The 2009 schizophrenia PORT psychosocial treatment recommendations and summary statements.Schizophrenia Bulletin, 36(1), 48-70. doi:10.1093/schbul/sbp115
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Feasibility and usefulness of training assertive community treatment team in CBT
This article evaluated the impact of training one ACT team in CBT techniques. This retrospective study found an ACT team who was trained in CBT would utilize CBT interventions with their clients, even after training. However, CBT interventions did not increase medication adherence or result in reductions in crisis visits and hospitalizations. Staff reported that the training was helpful in helping them better understand clients’ problems, increasing their self-confidence in dealing with clients’ problems, and improving their interventions with clients. However, they also identified several barriers to the use of CBT interventions, and these were: (a) the change in individual caseloads for some team members over time, (b) having to play multiple roles, such as driving, being an advocate, helping with shopping, and being a therapist, and (c) having to deal with crises and unexpected issues and not being able to focus on one problem. Another challenge mentioned was that clients had multiple needs and different team members were addressing different needs and this interfered with the continuity of therapy. The ACT psychiatrist and certified cognitive therapist, trained the rest of the ACT team in CBT techniques. Training consisted of 13 h of didactic and experiential training spread over a 6-month period. The training was based upon an unpublished CBT manual for case managers. The didactic training consisted of introduction to cognitive theory, cognitive case conceptualization, adapting cognitive therapy for SMIs and incorporating techniques into routine practice. The experiential training included learning various techniques, such as Socratic questioning, identifying and enhancing coping skills for positive psychotic symptoms, role-playing, and cost-benefits analysis. In addition to the didactic training, individual supervision was provided as needed and amounted to an hour every 2 weeks during the course of the study period.
Pinninti, N.R., Fisher, J., Thompson, K., & Steer, R. (2010). Feasibility and usefulness of training assertive community treatment team in cognitive behavioral therapy. Community Mental Health Journal, 46, 337-341. doi: 10.1007/s10597-009-9271-y
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Psychotherapy for schizophrenia in an ACT team context
This case study discusses the treatment of a man diagnosed with schizophrenia with severe social anxiety. CBT approaches were used and treatment was conducted by a psychotherapist within the context of ACT services. CBT and ACT were found to be complementary, and the combination of approaches was found to be effective helping to reduce the client’s social anxiety. However, the client decided after all that he did not want to continue therapy. The authors recommend that clinicians working within ACT teams attempt to incorporate CBT approaches to better address the needs of their clients.
Smith, S.M., & Yanos, P.T. (2009). Psychotherapy for schizophrenia in an ACT team context. Clinical Case Studies, 8(6), 454-462. doi: 10.1177/1534650109352006
Cognitive behavioural therapy for major psychiatric disorder: does it really work? A meta-analytical review of well-controlled trials.
This meta-analytical review of the CBT for major psychiatric disorders states that although cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) is claimed to be effective in schizophrenia, major depression and bipolar disorder, there have been negative findings in well-conducted studies and meta-analyses have not fully considered the potential influence of blindness or the use of control interventions. In the current meta-analysis it found that CBT is no better than non-specific control interventions in the treatment of schizophrenia and does not reduce relapse rates.
Lynch, D., Laws, K. R., & McKenna, P. J. (2010). Cognitive behavioural therapy for major psychiatric disorder: does it really work? A meta-analytical review of well-controlled trials. Psychological medicine, 40(01), 9-24. doi:10.1017/S003329170900590X

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