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A Pilot Test of a Peer Navigator Intervention for Improving the Health of Individuals with Serious Mental Illness

Authors
  • Kelly, Erin1
  • Fulginiti, Anthony2
  • Pahwa, Rohini2
  • Tallen, Louise2
  • Duan, Lei2
  • Brekke, John S.2
  • 1 University of California-Los Angeles, Health Services Research Center, Los Angeles, CA, 90023, USA , Los Angeles (United States)
  • 2 University of Southern California, School of Social Work, Los Angeles, CA, 90089, USA , Los Angeles (United States)
Type
Published Article
Journal
Community Mental Health Journal
Publisher
Springer US
Publication Date
Jun 07, 2013
Volume
50
Issue
4
Pages
435–446
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1007/s10597-013-9616-4
Source
Springer Nature
Keywords
License
Yellow

Abstract

Individuals with serious mental illness (SMI) are at considerably higher risk for morbidity and mortality than those in the general population. The current pilot trial is a preliminary examination of a peer health navigation intervention for improving health and healthcare utilization called the Bridge. Twenty-four individuals with SMI were randomly assigned to either peer navigation or treatment as usual (TAU). Navigators encouraged development of self-management of healthcare through a series of psychoeducation and behavioral strategies. Outcomes included a range of health consequences, as well as health utilization indices. After 6 months, compared to the TAU group, participants receiving the intervention experienced fewer pain and health symptoms. Participants changed their orientation about seeking care to a primary care provider (44.4 % vs. 83.3 %, χ2 = 3.50, p < .05) rather than the emergency room (55.6 % vs. 0 %, χ2 = 8.75, p < .01). Therefore, the Bridge intervention demonstrated considerable promise through positively impacting health and healthcare utilization.

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