• schizophrenia;
  • psychoeducation;
  • medication management;
  • cognitive psychotherapy;
  • relapse prevention

Psychoeducational medication management training (PMT), cognitive psychotherapy (CP) and key-person counselling (KC) were carried out in various combinations in this randomized, controlled intervention study of schizophrenic out-patients (according to DSM-III-R). Special design characteristics of the study were a control group consisting of non-specifically treated patients and a 2-year follow-up after completion of treatment in order to evaluate medium-term effects. A total of 132 patients underwent a follow-up examination 2 years after completion of treatment and were evaluated with an intention-to-treat approach. In the second follow-up year, all treatment groups had lower but not significantly different relapse rates compared to the control group. The most intensive treatment (PMT+CP+KC) produces a clinically relevant reduction in rehospitalization rate (a 26% reduction compared to the control group). In comparison with the non-specifically treated control group, whose original effect decreased, at least a medium-term therapeutic effect was recorded in the treatment groups.