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NCBH develops guide and recommends LAMs as first time treatment option


Source: The National Council for Behavioral Health


A Guide to Long-acting Medications (LAM), prepared by the National Council for Behavioral Health is a Call to Action for psychiatrists and other clinicians and behavioral health organizations to increase the use of LAMs, which are also known as long-acting antipsychotic medications (LAAs) and long-action injectables (LAIs) Drawing upon clinical guidance developed by the American Association of Community Psychiatrists and research evidence from the National Institute of Mental Health and others, the National Council for Behavioral Health believes that all community mental health providers should provide LAMs as a first-line treatment option to patients and encourages its members to increase and support the safe and effective use of LAMs. 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.

Although targeted to psychiatrists and other clinicians, these recommendations require that organizations play an active role in establishing systems to support staff, patients and families with information and education about the safe and effective use of LAMs and the infrastructure, policies and procedures needed to deliver this method of treatment. It is further recommended that organizations establish a continuous quality improvement (CQI) process to make necessary improvements that will increase patient understanding of and access to LAMs. Collecting, analyzing and using data is critical to monitoring progress and guiding the change process.

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