Use of leverage over patients' money to promote adherence to psychiatric treatment

J Nerv Ment Dis. 2006 Apr;194(4):294-302. doi: 10.1097/01.nmd.0000207368.14133.0c.


Persons who handle money for patients with mental disabilities often use access to funds as leverage to promote adherence to treatment. Drawing on data from a five-site study involving interviews of 1011 patients at community mental health centers, this paper explores who provides money assistance, the predictors of leverage use, and its impact on patients. A substantial minority of patients reported having experienced leverage. Substance abuse and frequent hospitalization were the strongest clinical predictors, suggesting that functional impairment is a key determinant. Patients experiencing money leverage were also likely to experience other forms of leverage, and although they were more likely to feel coerced, they were also more likely to believe that money leverage was effective. Family members seemed to provoke fewer negative feelings as money managers. The frequency with which money leverage is used suggests attention is needed to both the fairness of leverage and the means of minimizing negative effects.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Multicenter Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Ambulatory Care / economics
  • Ambulatory Care / methods
  • Attitude to Health
  • Caregivers / psychology
  • Caregivers / statistics & numerical data
  • Coercion
  • Commitment of Mentally Ill
  • Community Mental Health Centers
  • Fees and Charges*
  • Female
  • Financing, Government / economics
  • Financing, Government / methods
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mental Disorders / economics
  • Mental Disorders / psychology
  • Mental Disorders / therapy*
  • Motivation
  • Multivariate Analysis
  • Patient Compliance / psychology*
  • Proxy* / psychology
  • Psychotherapy / economics*
  • Psychotherapy / methods
  • Social Control, Formal