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Psychiatr Serv. 2006 Jan;57(1):133-6.

Racial disparities in the use of second-generation antipsychotics for the treatment of schizophrenia.

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  • 1Department of Community and Preventive Medicine, University of Rochester, New York, USA.



Despite recommendations that second-generation antipsychotics be used as first-line treatment for schizophrenia, previous studies have shown that blacks are less likely than whites to receive these newer drugs. This study determined the rate at which second-generation antipsychotics were prescribed to whites and blacks with schizophrenia who were treated as outpatients.


Data were collected from a community mental health clinic affiliated with an academic center in Rochester, New York. Multivariate logistic regression was used to examine the association between race and the receipt of a second-generation antipsychotic.


Data were available for 456 patients: 276 whites and 180 blacks. Ninety-five percent received a second-generation antipsychotic. Whites were approximately six times more likely than blacks to receive a second-generation medication, after the analysis controlled for clinical and sociodemographic factors (p<.001). Most of this difference appeared to be driven by a disparity in the use of clozapine.


In this sample, blacks were less likely than whites to receive second-generation antipsychotics, demonstrating a persistent gap in the quality of care for patients with schizophrenia.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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