Implementation and Effectiveness of Cognitive Processing Therapy in Community Corrections
Trauma exposure and drug addiction go hand-in-hand for the 2.17 million people who are incarcerated in the US, as prevalence rates of both exceed 80% among prisoners. Increasing access to proven trauma therapies in prisons may reduce drug use, crime, costs, and community burden associated with incarceration by improving prisoners’ mental health prior to release.
This study will increase knowledge on:
- strategies for implementing trauma therapies in prisons
- the effectiveness of a particular therapy (cognitive processing therapy) when delivered in a prison setting
Growing Together Study at Hawkins Unit
Arkansas has the eighth highest number of incarcerated women in the nation, 60% higher than the national average. However, little is known about the population of women who have become incarcerated while pregnant in Arkansas — including the outcomes of these women and their children, their mental and physical health histories, and the services that they receive during incarceration.
This project will expand knowledge on incarcerated women in Arkansas by:
- using administrative data to retrospectively examine the health status and outcomes of pregnant women who were incarcerated in Arkansas over a five-year period
- qualitatively examining women’s experiences during and following incarceration while pregnant.
We will also preliminarily examine the acceptability and feasibility of lactation, mental health, and support services that have recently launched.
Arkansas Crisis Stabilization Study
Crisis Stabilization Units (CSUs) are one of several innovative programs that have been used to aid in jail diversion for people who come into contact with police due to an acute mental health crisis. The Arkansas Crisis Stabilization Study (ARCS), a cohort study of 200 people who were admitted to CSUs in two Arkansas counties from 2020-2021, recently completed enrollment. The study team will be completing detailed person-level assessments with the study cohort five more times over the course of the next 12 months to examine individual outcomes of CSU availability and engagement.
Sexual violence victimization has been dubbed as a gender-specific “pathway to prison” among justice-involved women because of its near ubiquity and cyclical relations with both drug use and mental illness – factors strongly linked to incarceration. This study is comparing outcomes of women who did and did not complete therapy focused on recovery from experiences of sexual violence while incarcerated. We want to know whether women who complete this therapy had better outcomes after prison. We also want to know more about women’s post-release access to mental health services, including evidence-based trauma therapies. Enrollment is complete and we are now conducting study analyses.
Pulaski County Regional Crisis Stabilization Unit Outcomes Evaluation
This program evaluation is assessing the services offered by the Pulaski County Regional Crisis Stabilization Unit (PCRCSU). The PCRCSU opened in August 2018 to provide therapeutic psychiatric services to those in acute behavioral health crises. The goal was to provide options beyond emergency department visits, inpatient hospitalization, and transport to jail. In this project, we aggregate data from referral forms and clinical charts for the purpose of state-level reporting.
Sexual Assault Forensic Examiner Network for Evidence-Based Telemedicine (SAFE-NET)
The SAFE-NET project will leverage the extensive existing telehealth network supported by the UAMS Institute for Digital Health and Innovation to ensure that all sexual assault survivors in Arkansas receive examinations by trained Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners if they choose to present to an emergency department in the state. Evaluation of SAFE-NET outcomes and mental health outcomes education will be supported by the lab.