Women, Co-Occurring Disorders and Violence Project

Joseph P. Morrissey, Ph.D., Principal Investigator

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The Cecil G. Sheps Center for Health Services Research at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill served as a subcontractor to Policy Research Associates, Inc. of Delmar, NY as the study coordinating center under a cooperative agreement with the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). The coordinating center managed a 9-site quasi-experimental cost-effectiveness study of integrated services for women with co-occurring mental health and substance abuse disorders and histories of violence. At each site, two groups were studied at baseline and at six-month and twelve-month follow-ups: (1) women receiving trauma-specific integrated services versus (2) women receiving non trauma-specific services or services as usual.The work of the coordinating center was organized in two phases over five years: (1) a two-year planning period and (2) a three-year period to implement the cost-effectiveness study and for data collection, analyses, and dissemination of findings. A Steering Committee composed of local site investigators, government project officers, and coordinating center representatives had responsibility for designing and overseeing the completion of the study. The Sheps Center team participated in this work, assisted with the development of data collection protocols, assumed primary responsibility for the Outcome Evaluation Team, and took the lead in the outcome and cost analyses.Analyses of baseline and 12-month follow-up data (n=2,026) indicated that outcomes for women with co-occurring disorders and a history of trauma may improve with counseling that integrates mental health, substance abuse, and trauma-related issues into treatment. No difference in cost was detected between the intervention condition and usual care.