According to the National Institute for
Mental Health, 1% of the population has
schizophrenia. While it is a treatable mental disorder if
caught in the early stages, it generally takes an average
of 2.8 years before a correct diagnosis and effective
treatment plan is implemented. By that time, functioning
impairments have already developed.
many states were cutting mental health programs to save
on cost, Felton Institute partnered with researchers at
the University of
California, San Francisco to develop the
Felton Early Psychosis Program (formerly known as the
Prevention and Recovery in Early Psychosis program, or
"PREP") for California residents in San Francisco,
Alameda, San Mateo, San Joaquin, and Monterey counties.
An outpatient intervention program, the Felton Early
Psychosis Program serves people ages 14 to 35 who have
had early signs and symptoms of schizophrenia,
schizoaffective disorder, schizophreniform disorder, or
other specified psychotic disorder.
Felton Early Psychosis Program's efforts are aimed to
encourage schizophrenia's remission in clients through
medication and psychosocial initiatives. Their
comprehensive care approach is made up of a team of
providers, including therapists, psychiatrists,
psychiatric nurse practitioners, family partners, care
advocates, and employment and education specialists.
The program uses evidence-based practices and
fidelity monitoring to train their teams. Their goal
is to 1) identify schizophrenic patients at the
disorder's early stages and 2) help participants become
stable, goal-oriented, and independent within 2 years of
entering the program. This proactive approach to mental
illness was first developed abroad, but has been applied
slowly in the United States.
The original program received funding from the
California Mental Health Services Act (MHSA) in 2004.
Felton also received a Centers for Medicare & Medicaid
Health Care Innovation Award (HCIA) to expand its
programs to additional locations.