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Service evaluation of an embedded Early Intervention in Psychosis programme

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  02 February 2024

Paula Connolly
Department of Psychiatry, Tallaght Hospital, Dublin, Ireland
Cornelia Carey*
Department of Psychiatry, Tallaght Hospital, Dublin, Ireland
John Staunton
Ballyfermot Community Mental Health Team, Dublin, Ireland
Bridget Harney
Ballyfermot Community Mental Health Team, Dublin, Ireland
Liah Chambers
Department of Psychiatry, Tallaght Hospital, Dublin, Ireland
Ana-Maria Clarke
Naas General Hospital, Kildare and West Wicklow Mental Health Service, Naas, Ireland
Patrick McLaughlin
National Forensic Mental Health Service, Dublin, Ireland
Kathy Kerins
Child & Adolescent Mental Health Services, Dublin, Ireland
Katrina Kearney
Galway Roscommon Mental Health Services, Merlin Park Hospital, Galway, Ireland
Peter Whitty
Department of Psychiatry, Tallaght Hospital, Dublin, Ireland
Corresponding author: C. Carey; Email:



An average of 1300 adults develop First Episode Psychosis (FEP) in Ireland each year. Early Intervention in Psychosis (EIP) is now widely accepted as best practice in the treatment of conditions such as schizophrenia. A local EIP programme was established in the Dublin South Central Mental Health Service in 2012.


This is a cross-sectional study of service users presenting to the Dublin South Central Mental Health Service with FEP from 2016 to 2022 following the introduction of the EIP programme. We compared this to a previously published retrospective study of treatment as usual from 2002 to 2012.


Most service users in this study were male, single, unemployed and living with their partner or spouse across both time periods. Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for psychosis was provided to 12% (n = 8) of service users pre-EIP as compared to 52% (n = 30) post-programme introduction (p < 0.001), and 3% (n = 2) of service users engaged with behavioural family therapy pre-EIP as opposed to 15% (n = 9) after (p < 0.01). Rates of composite baseline physical healthcare monitoring improved significantly (p < 0.001).


Exclusive allocation of multidisciplinary team staff to EIP leads to improved compliance with recommended guidelines, particularly CBT-p, formal family therapy and physical health monitoring.

Short Report
© The Author(s), 2024. Published by Cambridge University Press on behalf of College of Psychiatrists of Ireland

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