Should long-acting medications (LAM) or long-acting injectable (LAI) antipsychotics be reserved for treatment-resistant cases or after a patient has failed many oral medications?

Drawing upon clinical guidance developed by the American Association of Community Psychiatrists and research evidence from the National Institute for Mental Health and others, the National Council for Behavioral Health believes that all community mental health providers should provide LAMs/LAIs as a first-line treatment option to patients and encourages its members to increase and support the safe and effective use of LAMs/LAIs. Currently, LAMs are most often utilized as a strategy to address medication non-adherence; however, research supports the use of LAMs as first-tier medications, not just as a second or third-tier approach.

The resource below is a call to action for psychiatrists, other clinicians, and behavioral health organizations to increase the use of LAMs, which are also known as long-acting antipsychotic medications (LAAs) and long-acting injectables (LAIs).

The American Psychiatric Association (APA) has recently updated the practice guideline for the treatment of patients with schizophrenia. Detailed recommendations for the use of LAIs are included.

 

Guide to Long-Acting Medications for Providers and Organizations (National Council for Behavioral Health, 2019)

This resource was selected by SMI Adviser content partners and approved by the SMI Adviser clinical expert team for inclusion in the knowledge base.

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