Factors Associated with First Session Nonattendance at a University-Based Family Therapy Clinic
Two hundred four consecutive psychotherapy initiators who called for an initial appointment at a university-based family therapy clinic during a one-year period were examined to see what factors influenced nonattendance. Researchers considered factors such as demographics, substance use, medical and psychiatric involvement, clinic practice, and constellation expected to attend. The 118 (58%) initiators who kept their appointment differed significantly from the 86 (42%) who did not in distance to the clinic, partner's age, number of children, marital status, employment, time of appointment, and therapeutic constellation. Divorce, unemployment, having a partner between the ages of 18-24, and having children were significant indicators of nonattendance. An appointment scheduled between 1:00 and 4:59 P.M., seeking conjoint psychotherapy, and living between 6 and 25 miles from the clinic were significant indicators of attendance. Implications for improving initial appointment attendance are presented.
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