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If you or someone you know is experiencing a mental health crisis or is considering suicide, help is available. Reach out to the 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline by calling or texting 988or contact Crisis Text Line by texting PA to 741741.
Here are some resources for individuals who may be experiencing symptoms of early psychosis. Reaching out for help early is important. If you are not sure where to turn or have questions about the type of services offered for early psychosis visit our “Find a Center” locator to be connected to someone who can help.
Early Psychosis Resources
“A Look Inside Early Psychosis Care in Pennsylvania”
At a PA FEP (First Episode Psychosis) center, treatment is designed with each individual in mind and involves many types of trained, caring professionals who will work with each person on a plan of recovery. The Coordinated Specialty Care (CSC) model is a comprehensive and team-based model, emphasizing hope, empowerment, and collaborative management of care. Watch this short video to learn more.
HeadsUp Animated Video “What is Coordinated Specialty Care?”
A brief educational video from HeadsUp about Coordinated Specialty Care which is the type of care someone receives at a Pennsylvania First Episode Psychosis (FEP) Center. It is available for use to help spread information about psychosis to those who may need support.
“Students With Psychosis offers 28+ hours of programming each week available at no cost to students and advocates globally. Over 75% of SWP leadership is from the lived experience perspective. It is their mission to empower student leaders and advocates worldwide through community building and collaboration.”
“NAMI Keystone Pennsylvania is a 501(c)(3) grassroots, nonprofit organization dedicated to improving the lives of children, adolescents, adults, and families affected by mental illness through recovery-focused support, education, and advocacy.”
“The leading source of free, expert, and confidential guidance on job accommodations and disability employment issues. Serving customers across the United States and around the world for more than 35 years, JAN provides free one-on-one practical guidance and technical assistance on job accommodation solutions, Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and related legislation, and self-employment and entrepreneurship options for people with disabilities.”
“Dedicated to ending stigma and destructive behaviors associated with mental health issues, moving away from a crisis-based response to prevention through education. We use the power of storytelling to provide evidence-based education on mental health challenges to our audiences. Our inspiring programs create safe communication spaces to discuss signs and symptoms often associated with mental health challenges and how to address them.”
“PFLAG is the first and largest organization for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ+) people, their parents and families, and allies. With nearly 400 chapters and 250,000 members and supporters crossing multiple generations of families in major urban centers, small cities, and rural areas across America, PFLAG is committed to creating a world where diversity is celebrated and all people are respected, valued, and affirmed.”
“SMI Adviser is funded by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) and administered by the American Psychiatric Association (APA). The APA works closely on this project with a team of experts from 30 other mental health organizations. This team includes individuals, families, clinical experts, peers, and policy makers – all working to create access to the best resources on serious mental illness (SMI).”
“Through online education, 24/7 peer support & connection to specialized care across the U.S., their goal is to shorten the path to quality mental health support for young people. Backed by One Mind and built by a team of wellness warriors who know what it’s like to struggle, they are here to support you as you tap into your own strength.”
“A UK-wide, London-based project that supports children and young people up to 25 years old who hear voices, see visions, have other ‘unusual’ sensory experiences or beliefs. Offers support for parents/families, and training for youth workers, social workers, mental health professionals and other supporters. Funded by BBC Children In Need and the John Lyon’s Charity.”
“A Global Impact Organization Moving Individuals, Families, and Policies Forward to Improve and Save Lives; leading a movement to improve care, support, and equity for the millions of people living with these conditions.”
“This is a channel dedicated to increasing knowledge around schizophrenia, schizoaffective disorder, and mental illness. These videos are intended to be a resource for people with the diagnosis, their loved ones, and for people who just want to learn more about the illness.”
“The Trevor Project is the leading suicide prevention and crisis intervention nonprofit organization for LGBTQ young people. We provide information & support to LGBTQ young people 24/7, all year round.”
“Offers peer-based, wellness-oriented support and empowering services and resources available when people need them, where they need them, and how they need to receive them—online 24/7, in local support groups, in audio and video casts, or in printed materials distributed by DBSA, their chapters, and mental health care facilities across America.”
“PHLP is a non-profit legal services organization that represents Pennsylvanians who need help getting or keeping MA. Visit their online resource library to find self-help materials related to various health care topics including MA.”
PA Medical Assistance for Workers with Disabilities (MAWD) A Guide to Eligibility
“Medical Assistance for Workers with Disabilities (also called “MAWD”) is a state health insurance program for individuals who have chronic health problems and are working. MAWD is often a good option for individuals who have too much income to qualify for other categories of Medical Assistance (MA) but who nonetheless need health insurance. MAWD provides comprehensive health insurance coverage and, compared to other MA programs, MAWD has high income and resource limits. It also has flexible work and disability requirements. This guide explains each MAWD eligibility requirement in depth, and tells you how to apply.”
Calm Harm is an award-winning app developed for teenage mental health charity stem4 by Clinical Psychologist Dr. Nihara Krause, in collaboration with young people, using principles from the evidence-based Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT). The Calm Harm app provides some immediate activities and techniques to help you break the cycle of self-harm behaviour and explore underlying trigger factors; the app supports you in building a ‘safety net’ of helpful thoughts, behaviours, and access to supportive people, as well as providing the opportunity to journal and self-reflect. The Calm Harm app also signposts to help. The app is private, anonymous, and safe.
Breathe2Relax is a FREE portable stress management tool which provides detailed information on the effects of stress on the body and instructions and practice exercises to help users learn the stress management skill called diaphragmatic breathing. Breathing exercises have been documented to decrease the body’s ‘fight-or-flight’ (stress) response, and help with mood stabilization, anger control, and anxiety management. Breathe2Relax can be used as a stand-alone stress reduction tool, or can be used in tandem with clinical care directed by a healthcare worker.
“This app offers free, evidence-based anxiety relief. Is anxiety getting in the way of your life? MindShift® CBT uses scientifically proven strategies based on Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) to help you learn to relax and be mindful, develop more effective ways of thinking, and use active steps to take charge of your anxiety. A new feature, the Community forum, now enables you to find and offer peer-to-peer support.”
“The Virtual Hope Box (VHB) is a smartphone application designed for use by patients and their behavioral health providers as an accessory to treatment. The VHB contains simple tools to help patients with coping, relaxation, distraction, and positive thinking. Users and providers can work together to personalize the VHB content on the individual’s own smartphone according to their specific needs. The individual can then use the VHB away from clinic, continuing to add or change content as needed.”
“There are an estimated ten thousand mental health apps available today, offering a range of possibilities from connection with a clinicain to symptom monitoring. Apps can be useful in care, but it’s important to be cautious about choosing a suitable app. The goal of this database is to equip users with the information necessary to make a decision based on the app characteristics that matter most to them.”
“The Schizophrenia Oral History Project (TSOHP) is an archive of life stories of persons with schizophrenia. Our narrators are women and men with schizophrenia who are sharing their lives in an effort to increase understanding and reduce stigma related to mental illness. Their stories reveal not only their struggles, but their remarkable courage and resilience, their hopes, dreams and talents, and their concern for others. In addition to documenting their histories, we are sharing their stories in presentations for professionals and the general public.”
My Experience with Psychosis — and My Recovery Journey
In “You’re Not Alone” Healthline highlights people’s stories of coping with emotions and managing mental health conditions on a daily basis. This article, by Francesca B. who discusses her experience with psychosis and her recovery journey.
Catherine (Cat) Conroy, M.Ed, Manager of HeadsUp
Neurodevelopment and Psychosis Section, Department of Psychiatry
Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania
10th floor, Gates Pavilion, HUP
3400 Spruce Street, Rm. 10054, Philadelphia, PA 19104 firstname.lastname@example.org
We are available during standard business hours (Monday-Friday, 9am-5pm) to answer any questions you may have about our organization or to direct you to programs in Pennsylvania that can offer clinical help.