Hearing Voices – How do we measure effectiveness?

Hearing Voices Networks can be found in many countries with many structures. The basic idea is to interpret the hallucinations as something useful rather than mindless. If it is useful, it can either inform you about something important (although that can be subtle) or can be negotiated with.

A literature review showed that there is no good evidence to believe this is effective. There is also no good evidence that it isn’t. What is evidenced is that groups are spreading and people keep attending them.

The author of this article seems to imply that this approach is not a good one. If this is the case, I disagree. This approach is not measured, so it could be good or bad.

What is needed is a means of measuring the impact that these groups have on participants. That can be done quite easily with the following measures:
* Comparing medication taken prior to attending any groups, medication taken after attending
* Surveying support groups (family/friends/carers) for differences in the individuals ability to cope and manage (there should be some good scales out there)
* Employment of before and after groups
And comparing these to those who do not attend any groups.

More study needs to take place to find out if this is an effective strategy rather than ruling it out because no study has been performed.