Aim: A retrospective study was conducted to assess the relationship between patient characteristics and psychiatric day care outcomes in 430 Japanese schizophrenic patients.
Methods: The patients were divided into psychiatric day care completers and non-completers. Patients who could not be included in these groups were categorized as unclassifiable. The completers were subdivided into four outcome groups: (i) patients who obtained a part-time job, (ii) patients who began working at community workshops for mentally disabled persons, (iii) patients who obtained a full-time job or returned to their former positions, and (iv) patients who entered or returned to school. The non-completers were subdivided into two outcome groups: (i) patients who discontinued psychiatric day care because of worsened schizophrenia, and (ii) patients who were rehospitalized because of worsened schizophrenia. Age, sex, age of onset of schizophrenia, number and duration of previous psychiatric hospitalizations, number of persons living with the patient, educational background, previous employment type, marital status, chlorpromazine-equivalent doses of antipsychotic drugs used, and psychiatric day care outcomes were compared among the outcome groups with logistic regression analysis using the outcomes as target variables.
Results: A later onset of schizophrenia and fewer previous psychiatric hospitalizations were significantly related with better outcomes. A higher educational background was related with the outcomes without statistical significance.
Conclusions: Our results suggest that the assessment of the relationship between patient characteristics and psychiatric day care outcomes is essential to enhance therapeutic effectiveness of psychiatric day care by beginning appropriate communication, support, and programs for individual patients at the initiation of the care.