Jessica M Pollard, PhD

Assistant Professor of Psychiatry; Clinical Director, STEP

Research Interests

Psychotic Disorders; Schizophrenia and Disorders with Psychotic Features

Public Health Interests

Health promotion-disease prevention

Research Organizations

Psychiatry: Connecticut Mental Health Center | Psychology Section | Specialized Treatment for Early Psychosis (STEP) Program

Office of Cooperative Research

Extensive Research Description

I am particularly interested in developing best practices for how to meaningfully engage transition age youth with psychosis into treatment, a portion of whom will not have insight that they suffer from an illness; understanding what “dose” of treatment is necessary for desired outcomes; what interventions work for whom; risk factors for psychosis and the potential role of abnormal sleep; how to minimize premature treatment disengagement; transitioning to less intensive clinical services over time without sacrificing treatment gains; and refining interventions to improve participation rates as well as efficacy. Scholarship in keeping with my role as Clinical Director of STEP includes writing treatment manuals and practice guidelines for our now validated model of care and workforce development recommendations, and providing outreach, education, and training.


Combining my previous research on jail diversion and criminal justice involvement for persons with mental illness with my focus on early course of psychotic disorders, I am in the process of examining criminal justice outcomes from STEP’s first randomized clinical trial, the prevalence rate of persons in early stage psychosis who are incarcerated in Connecticut, and how persons early in psychosis fare in Connecticut’s jails and prisons. My dissertation and thesis research examined the relationship between perceived coercion and outcomes in a national jail diversion sample and involved exploring the literature on procedural justice and perceived coercion. I am interested in how procedural justice and perceived coercion affect retention and outcomes in early intervention programs, particularly among those who are involved in the criminal justice system.

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Contact Info

Jessica M Pollard, PhD
Patient Care Location
Connecticut Mental Health Center
34 Park Street, Ste 219

New Haven, CT 06519
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Office Location
Connecticut Mental Health Center
34 Park Street, Ste 219

New Haven, CT 06519
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Mailing Address
34 Park Street
New Haven, CT 06519

Curriculum Vitae

Mindmap

Specialized Treatment Early in Psychosis (STEP)