The Devastating Impact of Coronavirus on Schizophrenia Treatment & Future Therapeutics

April 2021

Even if signs have receded, schizophrenia needs lifetime therapy. Medicines and developmental treatment may be used to better treat the disorder. Hospital stay may be required in some situations. Therapy is normally guided by a psychiatrist who has experience treating schizophrenia. A counsellor, social worker, clinical nurse, and perhaps a case manager may be part of the recovery staff to help direct care. In hospitals that specialise in schizophrenia therapy, the full-team solution could be available.


Noncompliance with medication is linked to an elevated likelihood of relapse, premature mortality, self-harm, and a reduced quality of life. While a small percentage of people with schizophrenia have a single case and heal completely, schizophrenia remains a lifelong illness for the majority of patients. The relapse rate is so high, with a 5-year follow-up analysis showing an 82 percent average first readmission rate and a 78 percent second relapse rate. According to another report, 77 percent of symptoms returned within a year of stopping the drug, and more than 90 percent returned within two years.

The Covid-19 impact

According to a recent WHO report, the COVID-19 pandemic has interrupted or stalled vital mental health programmes in 93 percent of countries worldwide, despite rising demand for mental health services such as schizophrenia treatment. The survey of 130 countries presents the first global proof of COVID-19's catastrophic effect on mental health care availability, demonstrating the urgent need for expanded investment.

All of which emphasises the need for more funding for mental health. If the pandemic progresses, demand for national and international schizophrenia treatment services, which have been chronically underfunded for years, will rise even more. It is inadequate to devote 2% of national health allocations to mental health. International funders must also do more: mental wellbeing also attracts less than 1% of health-related international assistance.

The rising need for telehealth services

Although several countries (70%) have implemented telehealth or teletherapy to address delays in in-person systems, there remain major differences in their adoption. In comparison to less than half of low-income countries, more than 80% of high-income countries reported using telehealth and teletherapy to close mental health gaps and the lack of schizophrenia treatment.

During COVID-19, WHO has provided advice to governments on how to manage critical care, particularly mental health care, and advises that countries devote money to mental health as an important part of their recovery and rehabilitation plans. The organisation also encourages countries to keep an eye on schizophrenia treatment service improvements and delays so that they can react appropriately.

Unmet needs and solutions

Furthermore, compliance to antipsychotic treatment is frequently suboptimal for the condition, and is influenced by a variety of patient, community, clinician, and treatment-related risk factors for nonadherence. With so many new barriers to care treatment, data on best practices in schizophrenia management must keep growing, including more insights and solutions for patients and physicians that may enhance outcomes and quality of life for those suffering from this widespread and dangerous mental illness.

The future of schizophrenia treatment

The efficacy of pharmacotherapy for this disease is still restricted to schizophrenia psychopathology, and the cause is still based on dopamine antagonism. Although looking backwards may be depressing, potential discoveries could be even more promising. The paradigms used in exploration will shift dramatically in the coming future. Rather than seeing schizophrenia as a disease structure characterized by insanity, it would be dismantled into its element psychopathology realms. Each domain would be a clinical goal for etiological and therapeutic research.

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