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Elm City COMPASS Honored at Yale-NAMI Conference on Neuroscience and Mental Health

May 15, 2023

Elm City COMPASS of New Haven was honored with the Yale Department of Psychiatry's Mental Health Advocacy Award at the 2023 Yale-NAMI Conference on Neuroscience and Mental Health held May 13 at The Anlyan Center.

Elm City COMPASS is a community-based initiative to create a system of sustainable supports for people in New Haven who experience a mental health or substance use crisis. The organization maintains a crisis response team and collaborates with emergency service agencies in the city.

It is directed by Jacob Tebes, PhD, professor of psychiatry (psychology), in the Child Study Center and of Public Health (Social and Behavioral Sciences).

Tebes accepted an award plaque at the conference from John Krystal, MD, Robert L. McNeil, Jr. Professor of Translational Research and professor of psychiatry, of neuroscience, and psychology, and chair of the Yale Department of Psychiatry. Tebes and other affiliates of Elm City COMPASS then gave the audience an overview of the program and outlined plans to expand services in New Haven.

Other speakers at the conference included:

  • Ronald Byrd, Robert Forlano, Steve Olsen, Joy Kaufman, PhD: "Participatory Research: Giving Voice to Clients at CMHC."
  • Mark Costa, MD, MPH; Sylvia Cooper; Graziela Reis, MPH; Fabiola Arbelo Cruz, MD: "The Imani Breakthrough Project: A Cultural and Faith-Based Harm Reduction Recovery Initiative for Black and Latinx Communities in Response to Our Current Opioid Crisis."
  • Philip Corlett, PhD: "SING - Songmaking in Groups and the Impact of Music on Psychosis"

Christopher Pittenger, MD, PhD, Elizabeth Mears and House Jameson Professor of Psychiatry, was the conference organizer. He was assisted by Jessica Costeines, PhD, program manager of the Clinical Neuroscience Research Unit at Yale School of Medicine.

The conference has been held annually since 1992 and is sponsored by the Yale Department of Psychiatry, the Connecticut chapter of the National Alliance for Mental Illness (NAMI), and Yale Center for Brain and Mind Health.

The Mental Health Advocacy Award has been given by the Department of Psychiatry every year since 2006 and, in most years, is announced at the Neuroscience Conference. Past recipients of this award have had major impacts on treatment, research, reduction of stigma, and enhancement of the wellbeing of those with mental illness through their advocacy, political action, and sharing of their own lived experience.

Submitted by Christopher Gardner on May 15, 2023