Past Releases: CATIE Phase 2
Contact Communications@thenationalcouncil.org or 301-984-6200, ext. 228
Washington, DC (April 5, 2006) —The National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) released the results of phase 2 of the CATIE — Clinical Antipsychotic Trials of Intervention Effectiveness — study in the April 2006 issue of the American Journal of Psychiatry.
CATIE is a multi-phase study comparing the effectiveness of various antipsychotic drugs used to treat schizophrenia. NIMH initiated CATIE as part of an overall effort to conduct "practical" clinical trials that address public health issues important to people affected by major mental illnesses in real-world settings. The National Council for Community Behavioral Healthcare, an association of provider organizations across the country that treat adults and children with mental illness and addictions disorders, is pleased with the NIMH decision to more directly connect research to the real world of our members and those they treat.
The first phase of the study was released in September of 2005 and showed that individuals with schizophrenia responded very differently to medications used in their treatment, and there is no simple one size fits all approach to prescribing. Also of note and importance was the high rate of medication discontinuation.
The second phase of CATIE studied 543 people in 57 different treatment sites to provide guidance on what to do next when there is a need to change medications, a common occurrence in treating schizophrenia. There was variable response in the second phase. While one medication, Clozapine, seemed to have better adherence rates, it also caused the potentially most dangerous side effects. The findings of the second phase of the study appear to confirm the first phase findings: effectiveness varies, depending on individuals. However, finding the right medications is critical, as research has repeatedly shown that those who consistently take medication do much better than those who don’t.
Individuals requiring psychiatric medication and their psychiatrists must work together to choose the right medication, taking into account the individual’s history, preference, and the side effect profile of each medication. This is a process that requires the availability of the full array of psychiatric medications as well as time and trust. Medications are most useful to individuals, and their families and communities as part of a recovery plan that includes education about the illness, ongoing reviews of the effects of prescribed medications, and a range of rehabilitation services.
The majority of individuals with serious mental illnesses receive treatment from a community based mental health provider organization. And CATIE makes an important contribution to informed practice. But only adequate funding and support can ensure the availability of the number and the quality of psychiatrists and other clinical staff who can provide the thoughtful, comprehensive care that enables individuals with serious mental illness to be successful members of their community.
The National Council for Community Behavioral Healthcare is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) association representing 1,300 mental health and addictions treatment and rehabilitation organizations that serve nearly six million adults, children, and families in communities across America.