Early intervention for psychotic disorders: Real-life implementation in Hong Kong

Gloria H.Y. Wong (Corresponding Author), Christy L.M. Hui, Jennifer Y.M. Tang, Wing Chung Chang, Sherry K.W. Chan, Jia Qi Xu, Jessie J.X. Lin, Dik Chee Lai, Wendy Tam, Joy Kok, Dicky Chung, S. F. Hung, Eric Y.H. Chen

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)


Hong Kong is among the first few cities in Asia to have implemented early intervention for psychosis in 2001. Substantial changes in psychosis service have since taken place. We reviewed available outcome data in Hong Kong, with reference to the philosophy of early intervention in psychosis, discussing experience and lessons learned from the implementation process, and future opportunities and challenges. Data accumulated in the past decade provided evidence for the benefits and significance of early intervention programmes: patients under the care of early intervention service showed improved functioning, milder symptoms, and fewer hospitalizations and suicides. Early intervention is more cost-effective compared with standard care. Stigma and misconception remains an issue, and public awareness campaigns are underway. In recent years, a critical mass is being formed, and Hong Kong has witnessed the unfolding of public service extension, new projects and organizations, and increasing interest from the community. Several major platforms are in place for coherent efforts, including the public Early Assessment Service for Young people with psychosis (EASY) programme, the Psychosis Studies and Intervention (PSI) research unit, the independent Hong Kong Early Psychosis Intervention Society (EPISO), the Jockey Club Early Psychosis (JCEP) project, and the postgraduate Psychological Medicine (Psychosis Studies) programme. The first decade of early intervention work has been promising; consolidation and further development is needed on many fronts of research, service and education.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)68-72
Number of pages5
JournalAsian Journal of Psychiatry
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • Early intervention
  • Psychotic disorders
  • Schizophrenia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology(all)
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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