Steven G. Potkin 1 , * , Jean-Yves Loze 2 , Carlos Forray 3 , Ross A. Baker 4 , Christophe Sapin 5 , Timothy Peters-Strickland 4 , Maud Beillat 5 , Anna-Greta Nylander 6 , Peter Hertel 6 , Simon Nitschky Schmidt 6 , Anders Ettrup 6 , Anna Eramo 7 , Karina Hansen 5 , Dieter Naber 8
24 August 2017
Schizophrenia is a chronic disease with negative impact on patients’ employment status and quality of life. This post-hoc analysis uses data from the QUALIFY study to elucidate the relationship between work readiness and health-related quality of life and functioning. QUALIFY was a 28-week, randomized study (NCT01795547) comparing the treatment effectiveness of aripiprazole once-monthly 400 mg and paliperidone palmitate once-monthly using the Heinrichs-Carpenter Quality-of-Life Scale as the primary endpoint. Also, patients’ capacity to work and work readiness (Yes/No) was assessed with the Work Readiness Questionnaire. We categorized patients, irrespective of treatment, by work readiness at baseline and week 28: No to Yes (n = 41), Yes to Yes (n = 49), or No at week 28 (n = 118). Quality-of-Life Scale total, domains, and item scores were assessed with a mixed model of repeated measures. Patients who shifted from No to Yes in work readiness showed robust improvements on Quality-of-Life Scale total scores, significantly greater than patients not ready to work at week 28 (least squares mean difference: 11.6±2.6, p<0.0001). Scores on Quality-of-Life Scale instrumental role domain and items therein–occupational role, work functioning, work levels, work satisfaction–significantly improved in patients shifting from No to Yes in work readiness (vs patients No at Week 28). Quality-of-Life Scale total scores also significantly predicted work readiness at week 28. Overall, these results highlight a strong association between improvements in health-related quality of life and work readiness, and suggest that increasing patients’ capacity to work is an achievable and meaningful goal in the treatment of impaired functioning in schizophrenia.