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Therapeutic outcome and cost-effectiveness analysis of patients treated in Groupal methods (group analysis, psychodrama, therapeutic community)

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The aim of the present study is the measurement of psychotherapy's financial cost both for patient and the providing organization in relation with the outcome of psychotherapy (effectiveness).

The sample of the present study includes all the patients using one or more of the therapy services of the Open Psychotherapy Centre during 1999 (n = 495). Data concerning the characteristics of the patients, such as diagnosis, mean time of therapy, oucome etc. derived from the archives of the Therapy Unit. Diagnosis is categorized according to DSM-IV. The data concerning the monetary cost for the patient arised from the archives of the Therapy and the Administration Units. From the financial records was estimated the total amount of therapeutic hours per therapeutic activity, separately for each Unit and the amount of money received (income) for each activity per year. From the patients' flow charts, it was recorded and coded for each of them the combination of therapies, in order to estimate the number of therapeutic hours and the amount of money spent per hour.

Regarding the therapy's outcome results showed that 46.7% was clinically improved and released from symptoms, 20.7% was improved but continue to have some symptoms, while 27.2% had no results and a 5.4% was deteriorated. The mean cost per hour for the patients varies from 35 euro (dyadic psychotherapy) to 4 euro (Therapeutic Community). The total cost for a person in order to fulfil his/her therapy was estimated at a mean value (+1SD) 3,052+540€. The results of the present study provide evidence of cost-effectiveness especially for groupal therapeutic activities, such as Group Analysis and Therapeutic Community.

This study indicates that psychotherapy provided in a Day Care Unit is substantially less costly both for the patient and the providing organization than the institutional care and more effective for major mental disorders.

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Correspondence to Vassiliki Villiotou.

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Open Access This article is published under license to BioMed Central Ltd. This is an Open Access article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 International License (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Villiotou, V. Therapeutic outcome and cost-effectiveness analysis of patients treated in Groupal methods (group analysis, psychodrama, therapeutic community). Ann Gen Psychiatry 5, S45 (2006) doi:10.1186/1744-859X-5-S1-S45

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Keywords

  • Public Health
  • Mental Disorder
  • Flow Chart
  • Group Analysis
  • Therapeutic Outcome