Transforming treatment and understanding of mental health through research
A private not-for-profit provider of behavioral health services, Rogers Behavioral Health is nationally recognized for specialized psychiatry and addiction services.
Rogers Research Center builds on more than a century of experience in evidence-based clinical practice. Rogers has been collecting data on patient outcomes using gold standard self-assessments for more than 20 years. Now under the leadership of Kelly Piacsek, PhD, who oversees research strategy and programming, Rogers is taking research to a new level in order to accelerate our learning and deliver innovations to the field to improve effectiveness of mental health practices. The Rogers Research Center pursues clinically relevant, high-quality research to answer questions and pursue advancements that will help us realize a future where mental illness can be predicted and prevented, treatment is accessible to all, and sustainable recovery is achieved more quickly..
Rogers engages in research with the goal of improving the overall effectiveness of evidence-based mental health and addiction treatment practices. Ultimately, we want to improve the outcomes patients experience with treatment and advance the industry standard for care. Because of the breadth of our clinical programs and locations, Rogers is uniquely positioned to integrate technology, predictive analytics, and one of the nation’s largest and longest running databases of behavioral health patient outcomes.
We also believe that when providers engage in research, they improve their clinical knowledge and drive for the best possible care for patients. To continuously improve outcomes, we are called to continue learning and asking critical questions that advance our field and achieve the most effective treatment methods available.
How does Rogers use research results?
We engage in research that is directly related to the patient populations we serve. We pursue questions that may help us improve diagnosis, optimize treatment planning, or provide more effective treatment protocols. Our research helps us further understand the science of mental health and new ways to potentially improve patient outcomes. Research results help providers at Rogers validate or improve our treatment techniques, as well as facilitate learning for the entire behavioral health field related to the conditions we treat, how they develop, and how to both prevent and treat them.
Are patients required to participate in research?
No, research is always completely voluntary, and a patient will never be required to participate in research as a condition of treatment or services. The research we conduct is either observational or interventional and will never displace the best-known standard of care today. The best clinical care is never compromised for research participants.
How is a patient’s personal information protected when participating in research?
Every research study conducted at Rogers has a data management and data security plan that is reviewed by the Research Center administrative team for quality and completeness, as well as our institutional review board (IRB). The IRB is a representative group of researchers, clinicians, other employees, and community representatives that has been trained and authorized to assess the safety and ethics of a research study using human subjects or their data. The IRB is responsible for ensuring that the data security strategy is appropriate for the work being done, and that proper data use agreements and monitoring of data use meets strict standards.
Who is eligible to participate in research?
Rogers patients and volunteer community members are eligible to participate in research if they meet the inclusion criterial of a study and don’t have any conditions or circumstances that would be contra-indicated for research participation.
Is there a cost to participating in a research study?
There is no charge associated with research participation. Wherever possible, Rogers Research Center staff will seek to minimize the demand on participants’ time to engage in research. For some studies, additional time, visits, or transportation will be required, and to the extent possible, Rogers and our research partners will make every effort to reimburse additional costs.
Will an individual’s treatment outcomes be improved by participating in research?
Research studies seek to answer questions and test theories that have not yet been proven. While there is a possibility that a research intervention may ultimately prove beneficial, there is no expectation or guarantee that participating in research will result in improved outcomes.
What happens if a patient decides they no longer want to participate in a research study?
Participation in research is completely voluntary. If, at any time, a participant decides he or she no longer wants to participate in a study, they may opt out. Depending on the type and duration of the study, Research Center staff will work with the participant, and where applicable, his or her care team, to determine the best timing and means to discontinue study activity. Sometimes, when data has been collected anonymously, it may not be possible to remove an individual participant’s data from a study, but a study participant may withdraw from further participation in any study at their discretion.
How does Rogers share the results of a research study with participants and the community?
We aim to engage in robust, clinically-relevant and high-quality research that produces results that are generalizable to the field of behavioral health. Our goal is to formally publish the findings of our research in high impact peer-reviewed scientific journals. Recent publications are listed on our website where they can be accessed by participants as well as community members.
Is there a role in research studies for participants who are not Rogers patients?
Frequently, studies require control populations or study groups who are either community members or patients of other health systems or treatment programs. We also welcome community volunteers who are not diagnosed with a mental health disorder who want to serve as study controls where needed. If you are interested in determining eligibility to serve as a study volunteer participant, you may contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
How does Rogers ensure safety for research participants?
All studies conducted at Rogers are thoroughly reviewed by a research administrative team to ensure they are well-designed, resourced, properly controlled, and feasible. Studies that meet administrative quality requirements are assessed by Rogers’ Institutional Review Board (IRB) for patient ethical and safety considerations, including data security, before being granted approval to begin. Rogers Research Center also maintains a research quality and safety program that monitors study activities to ensure study protocols are followed appropriately and results are reviewed as needed to ensure compliance and safety.
The importance of research
Tens of millions of people are impacted by mental illness and addiction each year, and the numbers are rising. Sadly, more than half of people suffering from mental illness don’t receive treatment, or initial treatments are ineffective. While Rogers has consistently demonstrated patient outcomes that exceed national averages, our providers and leaders want more for our patients.
Through robust and relevant research programs, we have an opportunity to:
Glean insights into causes and prevention of mental illness, helping patients and their loved ones to better understand the “whys” of the illness.
Drive innovations to enhance treatment strategies and accessibility, and improve patient outcomes.
Leverage data analytics to precisely predict treatment response, potentially decrease treatment time and improve cost-effectiveness.
Enable evidence-based decision-making for the next generation of mental health providers, scholars, researchers, and administrators.
Positively influence current and future discussions about mental health care and the stigma associated with it.
The Rogers research advantage
1. Access to research participants
Patient participation and study enrollment (sample size) is cited as one of the most prominent barriers to conducting viable, significant behavioral health research. Rogers is well positioned to leap this hurdle:
Rogers treats an average of 1,400 patients each day.
Rogers is home to the largest OCD and anxiety program in the world, treating more than 300 patients each day.
Rogers treats patients of all ages (children, adolescents, and adults), across a spectrum of disorder and symptom severity.
Because of our reputation for high-quality care and safety, we have successfully and safely engaged hundreds of community participants as observational and “less than minimal-risk” controls in multiple research studies. Community partnership is an essential component of ongoing research success.
2. Access to data
Rogers has been collecting patient outcomes data for over two decades. Our long-standing clinical foundation of measurement-based treatment and outcomes assessment has positioned Rogers as the largest collector of mental health-specific patient-reported outcomes measures in the nation, with OCD and anxiety patient data volumes topping the list.
Rogers’ proprietary automated assessment system allows us to collect patient outcomes data at admission, bi-weekly during treatment, at discharge, and at one-year follow-up. About 90% of our patients consent to having their de-identified outcomes data utilized for research purposes, allowing our researchers access to millions of patient outcomes measures, all at the item level.
In 2019 alone, Rogers completed 600,000 assessments with over 15 million data points. Our complete database includes 2.5 million assessments consented for research use.
3. Advances in technology
Understanding its value in both data collection and future treatment protocols, Rogers is developing and leveraging innovative technologies to advance research priorities.
Rogers developed a patient portal to enable patient data collection before admission and at more points following discharge.
Partnering with our electronic medical record developer, we have created a real-time model to provide clinical decision support, and to develop and validate predictive learning algorithms such as in suicide risk awareness.
In collaboration with San Diego State University, Rogers has pioneered the development of a mobile app to deploy cognitive exercises that may enhance OCD, anxiety and depression treatment. Studies to validate effectiveness were conducted in 2019 and results are promising.
Advances in biometric sensors and wearable technologies allow simple, continuous monitoring of detailed patient physiologic data both as an input and output of treatment. Such longitudinal data over a patient’s treatment timeline will aid researchers in better understanding acute and long-term therapy response patterns, as well as treatment readiness indicators related to sleep, stress, nutrition and physical activity.
Finally, with development of new and improved transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) and transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS), two low-current, painless, neuro stimulation techniques, we are positioned to collaborate with leaders in the field to explore treatment enhancement, with the addition of high-precision, non-invasive stimulation therapy.
Rapid advances in computational platform power continue to increase our ability to interact with large health care data sets to support machine learning techniques applied to big data. Our growing clinical effectiveness and data analytics talent and infrastructure makes Rogers uniquely suited to leverage AI and large population data sets in understanding complex variables and harnessing deep insights from mental health and addiction prediction and treatment strategies.
External Research Requests
All requests for promoting outside studies at Rogers are reviewed by the Rogers research leadership team and Rogers IRB before promotional material can be approved. If you are interested in advertising your research project at Rogers or would like to speak to us about collaborating, click here.
Depending on the nature of your request, we will reach out with additional information or guidance. We highly recommend you have already identified a member of the Rogers medical staff as a potential collaborator or advocate for your project.
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We have more than 20 years of tracking clinical outcomes and nearly 10,000 of our patients participating.