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FY16 Annual Report

FY16 Annual Report Cover

Highlights of Fiscal Year 2016 include:

  • A five-year grant from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to better serve women suffering from perinatal depression;
  • A randomized controlled trial (RCT) to test the effectiveness of an integrated, home-based, intensive antisocial behavior, mental health, and substance use intervention for 17-21 year olds with serious mental illness and justice system involvement;
  • A Transitions Research and Training Center-based internship program for local college students with lived mental health experience;
  • The SAMHSA funded Now Is The Time – Healthy Transitions (NITT-HT) National Evaluation, which embraces the principles of participatory action research (PAR) and implements a framework for meaningfully infusing youth voice; and
  • A new SPARC webinar series that expands the way we inform stakeholders about the latest mental health services research.

The Systems and Psychosocial Advances Research Center conducts research to enhance services, improve the quality of life, and promote recovery for people with behavioral health conditions. Our research involves, informs, and advises individuals with lived experience, their families, providers, administrators and policymakers navigating the behavioral health landscape in the Commonwealth and beyond. SPARC was created in 1993 when it was designated a Center of Excellence for Psychosocial and Systems Research by the Massachusetts DMH. Our mission mirrors the DMH commitment to collaborating with other state agencies, consumers, families, advocates, providers, and communities. DMH and SPARC are aligned in their vision of promoting mental health through early intervention, treatment, education, policy, and regulation to provide opportunities for citizens of the Commonwealth to live full and productive lives.

Maryann Davis assumed the role of Director of SPARC on October 1, 2015. SPARC’s previous Director, Carl Fulwiler accepted positions as the UMMS Medical Director and Associate Research Director at the Center for Mindfulness in Medicine, Health Care and Society and as Director of Clinician Wellness Programs at UMass Memorial Medical Center. Dr. Fulwiler continues to remain a valuable SPARC faculty member.

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