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Mortari & Pino - Conversational pursuit of medication compliance.pdf (236.09 kB)

Conversational pursuit of medication compliance in a Therapeutic Community for persons diagnosed with mental disorders

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journal contribution
posted on 2015-10-12, 13:02 authored by Luigina Mortari, Marco PinoMarco Pino
Purpose: In this article, we contribute to the debate on medication compliance by exploring the conversational ‘‘technologies’’ entailed in the process of promoting clients’ adherence to psychopharmacological prescriptions. Using a case study approach, we explore how medication- related problems are dealt with in conversational interaction between the staff members and the clients of a mental health Therapeutic Community (TC) in Italy. Method: Four meetings between two staff members (Barbara and Massimo) and the clients of the TC were audiorecorded. The data were transcribed and analyzed using the method of Conversation Analysis. Results: Barbara and Massimo recur to practices of topic articulation to promote talk that references the clients’ failure to take the medications. Through these practices they deal with the practical problem of mobilizing the clients’ cooperation in courses of action that fit into the institutional agenda of fostering medication adherence. Conclusions: Barbara and Massimo’s conversational practices appear to reflect the assumption that medication-related problems can be reduced to compliance problems. This assumption works to make the clients accountable for their failure to take the medications while shaping a conversational environment that is unreceptive to their complaints about side effects. Implications for the understanding of mental health rehabilitation practice in TCs are discussed.



  • Social Sciences


  • Communication, Media, Social and Policy Studies

Published in

Disability and Rehabilitation






1419 - 1430


MORTARI, L. and PINO, M., 2014. Conversational pursuit of medication compliance in a Therapeutic Community for persons diagnosed with mental disorders. Disability and Rehabilitation, 36 (17), pp.1419-1430.


Taylor & Francis (© 2014 The authors)


  • AM (Accepted Manuscript)

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This work is made available according to the conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) licence. Full details of this licence are available at: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/

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This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.




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