Purpose: Early residential mobility of schizophrenic patients may relate to discontinuity of treatment and adverse outcome. However, factors influencing early residential mobility of these patients are still poorly examined. The aim of this study was to disentangle the influence of individual and neighborhood characteristics on early residential mobility of schizophrenic patients.
Methods: The study used administrative data of 13, 400 individuals newly diagnosed with schizophrenia in Quebec between 2001 and 2002. These individuals were nested in 163 different health territories. Multilevel analyses were used to assess the contribution of individual and neighborhood characteristics on early residential mobility.
Results: The final model indicates that at the individual level, being men, wonder patients and physical comorbidity increased the likelihood of early residential mobility whereas older patients were less likely to migrate earlier. The health territory level explains about 7 % of the variation of early residential mobility and variables influencing residential mobility at this level are the fourth and the third quartiles of the population density.
Conclusions: Factors influencing early residential mobility of schizophrenic patients are located at both individual and neighborhood levels. This suggests that policies targeting only one-level factors are unlikely to significantly delays early residential mobility.