OPEN DIALOGUE for Treatment of Psychosis/ symptoms labeled as schizophrenia
The Best Recovery Rate in the Western World
This is the process that award winning journalist, Robert Whitaker refers to in his book "Anatomy of an Epidemic." Dr. Seikkula has 20 years of success stories and the best recovery rate in the western world for patients diagnosed with their first psychotic break.
OPEN DIALOGUE: An Alternative, Finnish Approach to Healing Psychosis
In the far north of Finland, a stone’s throw from the Arctic Circle, a group of innovative family therapists converted the area’s traditional mental health system, which once boasted some of Europe’s poorest outcomes for schizophrenia, into one that now gets the best statistical results in the world for first-break psychosis. They call their approach
Their principles, though radical in this day and age of multi-drug cocktails and involuntary hospitalizations, are surprisingly simple. They meet clients in crisis immediately and often daily until the crises are resolved. They avoid hospitalization and its consequential stigma, preferring to meet in the homes of those seeking their services. And, perhaps most controversially, they avoid the use of anti-psychotic medication wherever possible.
They also work in groups, because they view psychosis as a problem involving relationships. They include in the treatment process the families and social networks of those seeking their help, and their clinicians work in teams, not as isolated, sole practitioners. Additionally, their whole approach values of the voice of everyone in the process, most especially the person directly in crisis. And finally, they provide their services, which operate within the context of Finnish socialized medicine, for free.
weaves together interviews with psychiatrists, psychologists, nurses, and journalists to create both a powerful vision of medication-free recovery and a hard-hitting critique of traditional psychiatry.
Two Year Outcomes: Finnish Open Dialogue Alternative to Traditional Psychiatry
Best recovery rate in the western world for patients diagnosed with their first psychotic break.
This is a study published in 2000 about two-year outcomes from the "Open Dialogue" alternative in Finland. From "Spiritual Recoveries": Jaakko Seikkula, Ph.D. is a professor at the Institute of Social Medicine at the University of Tromso in Norway and senior assistant at the Department of Psychology in the University of Jyvskyl in Finland. Between 1981-1998, he worked as a clinical psychologist at the Keropudas hospital in Finland where he and colleagues developed a highly successful approach for working with psychosis known as Open Dialogue Treatment ). The approach de-emphasizes the use of drugs and focuses instead on developing a social network of family and helpers and involving the patient in all treatment decisions. Ongoing research shows that over 80% of those treated with the approach return to work and over 75% show no residual signs of psychosis. Official government statistics comparing 22 health districts in Finland found that Dr. Seikulla's district was the only one not to have any new chronic hospital patients in a two year period and led the National Research and Development Center for Welfare and Health to award a prize for "over ten years ongoing development of psychiatric care."