Yale researchers contributed to a paper published in The Journal of Mental Health Policy and Economics that evaluates the economic advantages to patients and third-party payers offered by the Specialized Treatment Early in Psychosis (STEP) clinic at Yale.
STEP, a collaborative program of the Yale Department of Psychiatry and Connecticut Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services, was established in 2006 to offer early intervention services to people suffering from psychotic illness.
Patients undergo a thorough initial assessment before entering treatment, which may include medication management, community coaching, individual and group therapy, and support and education for family members and friends.
The goal of the program is to improve a patient's functioning, reduce stress, and minimize symptoms through early intervention.
In their paper, the researchers evaluated the economics of a clinic like STEP relative to usual treatment, and found that costs were significantly lower. STEP participants also were less likely to have inpatient or emergency department visits.
Vinod Srihari, MD, Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Director of STEP, was the paper's senior author. Also contributing from the Yale Department of Psychiatry were Suat Kucukgoncu, MD; Cenk Tek, MD; Jessica Pollard, PhD; John Cahill, MBBS; Scott Woods, MD; and Robert Cole, MHSA.