Psychoeducation is currently considered an essential intervention in the management of bipolar disorders. A psychoeducation group programme for patients with bipolar disorders named “Porta Aberta” (Open Door) has been implemented since 2007 at the Day-hospital of our psychiatric department.
To assess the efficacy of group psychoeducation in reducing the average number and duration of readmissions and to determine the individual characteristics (gender, marital status and disorder subtype) that might influence these outcomes.
Review of the clinical records of a consecutive sample of patients with bipolar disorders discharged from the inpatient unit, attending at least 4 out 8 programme sessions, and with a one-year follow-up since 2007. Variables assessed were: gender, age, marital status, subtype of bipolar disorder (I or II), and number and duration of psychiatric admissions in the year before and in the year following the programme attendance.
The 69 patients included were 37.3 ± 10.7 years old, mainly women (68.1%), and single (47.8%). A statistically significant reduction in the average duration of readmissions (24.7 versus 17.3 days, p = .028), and in the average number of readmissions (1.3 versus 0.3, p = .032) was found. Only 15 patients were readmitted. Patient's gender and marital status, as well as disorder subtype had no influence in the results.
Group psychoeducation is an effective intervention in reducing the number and duration of readmissions in bipolar patients despite gender, marital status and subtype of bipolar disorder.