Quality prescribing in early psychosis: key pharmacotherapy principles

James G. Scott, Gemma McKeon, Eva Malacova, Jackie Curtis, Bjorn Burgher, Iain Macmillan, Andrew Thompson, Stephen D. Parker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Objective: To present a practical, easy-to-implement clinical framework designed to support evidence-based quality prescribing for people with early psychosis. Method: Identification and explanation of key principles relating to evidence-based pharmacotherapy for people with early psychosis. These were derived from the literature, practice guidelines and clinical experience. Results: Key principles include (1) medication choice informed by adverse effects; (2) metabolic monitoring at baseline and at regular intervals; (3) comprehensive and regular medication risk–benefit assessment and psychoeducation; (4) early consideration of long-acting injectable formulations (preferably driven by informed patient choice); (5) identification and treatment of comorbid mood disorders and (6) early consideration of clozapine when treatment refractory criteria are met. Conclusions: Current prescribing practices do not align with the well-established evidence for quality pharmacotherapy in early psychosis. Adopting evidence-based prescribing practices for people with early psychosis will improve outcomes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)341-345
Number of pages5
JournalAustralasian Psychiatry
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2022


  • antipsychotic medications
  • early psychosis
  • maintenance treatment
  • prescribing practices

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