The SMI Research Group is pleased to be involved in the RAISE Early Treatment Program (ETP) research project. The ETP study is part of the National Institute of Mental Health’s (NIMH) Recovery After an Initial Schizophrenia Episode (RAISE) Project. ETP is one of two research teams that NIMH has funded under the RAISE Project, which aims to intervene at the earliest signs of schizophrenia.

The ETP study is investigating how services should be provided to reduce symptoms and improve life functioning for people who have been recently diagnosed with schizophrenia. It will compare two different ways of providing treatment (RAISE therapies vs. standard treatment). Participants are offered mental health services such as medication and psychosocial therapy and participate in a variety of assessments in order to track progress and investigate mental health service effectiveness.

The ETP study is taking place at 35 locations across the United States. The Community Mental Health Center (CMHC) of Lancaster County, NE has been selected as one of these sites. The SMI research group provides clinical and methodological support to the project as part of our collaborative relationship with the CMHC.  The Lincoln site Project Director, Mary Sullivan, is an Adjunct Research Specialist in the UNL Department of Psychology, and the project’s Research Assistant, Liz Cook, is an advanced graduate student in the UNL Clinical Psychology Training Program.  Both are members of the UN-L SMI research group.  It is anticipated that the ETP study will provide an externship placement for the next several years. It is an excellent opportunity for the extern to gain valuable experience with various aspects of research and clinical work, including liaising with the IRB, conducting assessments, maintaining the study database, and serving as a member of the treatment team.