The Schizophrenia Research Unit (SRU) is a 12-bed inpatient unit in
The New York State Psychiatric Institute (NYSPI). NYSPI
is associated with the New York Presbyterian Medical Center and the
Department of Psychiatry of Columbia University.
Research-The Schizophrenia Research Unit aims to provide
state-of-the-art treatment for patients with schizophrenia while
attempting to answer a wide range of scientific questions about the nature
and causes of this illness. Our goal is to develop a comprehensive
knowledge base, which will enable us to provide the best possible
treatment. The study design is multifaceted, examining diagnostic,
neurological, biochemical, physiological and psychosocial aspects of the
illness. We are particularly interested in using images to study the brain
and in the role played by genetic and environmental factors in
schizophrenia. Family members of patients will be invited to participate
in the investigations and assessments. Patients may be eligible to
participate in studies of investigational drugs that show promise for the
treatment of positive and negative symptoms.
Free Treatment- Patients may be eligible for treatment with any
approved antipsychotic medication including Ziprasidone, Risperidone,
Clozapine, Quetiapine, Olanzapine, and Aripiprazole. A program of
psychoeducation, social skills training, leisure education, and family
work is conducted throughout the hospital stay. The Schizophrenia Research
Unit is supported by Federal, State and private funding. There is no cost
to patients or their families.
Who will be considered for admission to the SRU?
The staff of the Schizophrenia Research Unit will consider admitting only
those individuals whom we feel will benefit from the evaluation and
treatment provided in our unit. Patients must meet the following criteria
between 18 and 60 years of age
have a diagnosis of schizophrenia, schizoaffective or schizophreniform
disorder, or new onset psychotic disorder
willing to participate in most of the research protocols
give permission for us to contact at least one relative if available
have no significant medical illness
have no recent history of significant violence or self-injurious behavior
have no current drug or alcohol abuse
able to give informed consent for the research procedures
if appropriate, consider undergoing a period of 4 weeks off of medication
if appropriate, consider participation in a study of experimental
What are some of the research studies conducted on the unit?
- Studies of brain anatomy using MRI (magnetic resonance imaging), SPECT
(single-photon emission computed tomography) and PET (positron-emission
- Neuropsychological evaluation of cognitive functioning in schizophrenia.
- The development of new methods of diagnosis and classification of
- Studies of the role of genetics in schizophrenia using novel family
- Investigation of pre-natal and birth complications and their role in the
development of schizophrenia.
- Electrophysiological evaluation of information processing.
- Role of stress in schizophrenia.
- Psychosocial investigations of the impact of family treatment, social
skills training, and leisure education.
- Clinical trials of new medication treating symptoms of schizophrenia
What is the length of the hospitalization?
Decisions about length of stay are determined based on the clinical needs
and research participation of the individual patient. An individualís stay
on the unit may vary based on factors such as response to treatment,
aftercare plans, etc. The average length of stay in the SRU is 2 to 4
Is smoking allowed in the SRU?
Smoking is not allowed during the admission to the SRU. If you smoke and
decide to be admitted, staff will assist you to stop smoking.
In what ways will I benefit from participation in research?
Research studies are not designed for your direct benefit. However, any
research findings that may have a clinical significance for your treatment
(i.e., diagnostic consensus) will be reported to your clinician in the SRU
and will become part of your permanent record.
In what ways will I benefit from the clinical program?
- Extensive diagnostic evaluation.
- Access to approved medications for schizophrenia and extended length of
- Daily individual and group activities, with a focus on independent
- Active social, occupational, recreational and family assessment and
treatment aimed to improve self-care and interpersonal skills and insight
about the illness.
How do I apply for the Schizophrenia
If you are interested in participating in our research efforts
and program, call Beatriz Alvarez, Screening Coordinator, at
(212) 543-5418 or the SRU nursing station, at (212) 543-5379.
We will return your call to obtain some initial information.
Patients and relatives are encouraged to meet with us for an
on-site screening interview that will provide an opportunity
for the individual and family to learn more about the different
research studies and clinical components of the SRU.
For More Information, please contact:
||Roberto Gil, M.D
||Unit Chief, SRU
|New York State Psychiatric Institute
||New York State Psychiatric Institute
|1051 Riverside Dr., Unit 2
New York, NY 10032
|1051 Riverside Dr., Unit 2
New York, NY 10032
Ph: (212) 543-5418 Fax: (212) 543-5537
Ph: (212) 543-6190 Fax: (212) 543-5537