Medication compliance among mentally Ill patients in public clinics in Kingston and St. Andrew, Jamaica


The Bellevue and the Hagley Park mental health outpatient clinics in Jamaica serve the majority of psychiatric patients in the country, but there is a dearth of research on medication compliance, which is a very important mental health issue. Medication compliance affects intervention outcomes. Therefore, this study seeks to examine medication compliance among psychiatric patients in Jamaica. A 33-item questionnaire which included items on demographics, health conditions, medication compliance and insightfulness was administered to a sample of 370 participants with a response rate of 93%. The majority of the participants have schizophrenia, followed by depression, bipolar disorder and drug-induced psychosis. The majority of the participants (65.3%) did not comply with their prescribed medication regimen. Medication compliance was significantly related to: gender (P < 0.05) where males were more likely to take the prescribed medication, family support (P < 0.05) where the participants who received family support (the majority being males) were more likely to take the prescribed medication, and insightfulness (P < 0.05) where the majority of participants with insightfulness were females. Locus on control was not statistically tested but a majority of the non- compliant participants reported that factors external to themselves had greater control over their disorder. Conclusion: There are three significant factors that explain the medication compliance of psychiatric patients in Jamaica. An important non-tested factor is locus of control so there needs to be more research to understand the range of factors that can inform and improve patient education about medication compliance.

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Pusey-Murray, A. , Bourne, P. , Warren, S. , LaGrenade, J. and Charles, C. (2010) Medication compliance among mentally Ill patients in public clinics in Kingston and St. Andrew, Jamaica. Journal of Biomedical Science and Engineering, 3, 602-611. doi: 10.4236/jbise.2010.36082.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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