Systematic review of feasibility and acceptability of psychosocial interventions for schizophrenia in low and middle income countries

Abstract Background In low and middle income countries there is evidence to suggest effectiveness of community-based psychosocial interventions for schizophrenia. Many psychosocial interventions have however been conceptualized in high income countries and assessing their feasibility and acceptability in low and middle income countries is pertinent and the objective of this review. Methods Six databases were searched using search terms (i) “Schizophrenia”; (ii) “Low and middle income or developing countries” and (iii) “Psychosocial interventions”. Abstracts identified were extracted to an EndNote Database. Two authors independently reviewed abstracts according to defined inclusion and exclusion criteria. Full papers were accessed of studies meeting these criteria, or for which more information was needed to include or exclude them. Data were extracted from included studies using a predesigned data extraction form. Qualitative synthesis of qualitative and quantitative data was conducted. Results 14 037 abstracts were identified through searches. 196 full articles were reviewed with 17 articles meeting the inclusion criteria. Little data emerged on feasibility. Barriers to feasibility were noted including low education levels of participants, unavailability of caregivers, and logistical issues such as difficulty in follow up of participants. Evidence of acceptability was noted in high participation rates and levels of satisfaction with interventions. Conclusions While there is preliminary evidence to suggest acceptability of community-based psychosocial interventions for schizophrenia in low and middle income countries, evidence for overall feasibility is currently lacking. Well-designed intervention studies incorporating specific measures of acceptability and feasibility are needed.