Treatment of Cognition in the Schizophrenia Spectrum: The Context of Psychiatric Rehabilitation

Will D. Spaulding, Mary E. Sullivan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Evidence-based approaches and modalities for targeting and treating the cognitive impairments of schizophrenia have proliferated over the past 15 years. The impairments targeted are distributed across the cognitive spectrum, from elemental perception, attention, and memory, to complex executive and social-cognitive functioning. Cognitive treatment is most beneficial when embedded in comprehensive programs of psychiatric rehabilitation. To personalize comprehensive treatment and rehabilitation of schizophrenia spectrum disorders, practitioners and participants must select from a rapidly expanding array of particular modalities and apply them in the broad context of the participant's overall recovery. At present, no particular treatment, cognitive or otherwise, can be considered more important or primary than the context in which it is applied. Persistent difficulty in dissemination of new technology for severe and disabling mental illness compounds the significance of the context created by a full treatment array. In this article, a case-study of a mental health service system is described, showing the broad-ranging effects of degrading the rehabilitative context of treatments, obviating the benefits of cognitive treatment and other modalities. To realize the promise of cognitive treatment, the problems that prevent dissemination and maintenance of complete psychiatric rehabilitation programs have to be addressed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)S53-S61
JournalSchizophrenia bulletin
StatePublished - Jul 1 2016


  • cognitive remediation
  • cognitive therapy
  • deinstitutionalization
  • mental health policy
  • service systems

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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