Ashley Weiss, DO, MPH, has noticed a significant change in her patients over the last year: the time from psychosis onset and treatment has been cut in half. Weiss and her colleagues at CALM: Clear Answers to Louisiana Mental Health discovered this by monitoring the duration of untreated psychosis in people referred to their clinic, the Early Psychosis Intervention Clinic in New Orleans, LA (EPIC-NOLA). CALM functions as the advocacy and outreach arm of the clinic, and Weiss, Vice Chair of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry at Tulane University School of Medicine, believes that getting the word out about the services EPIC-NOLA offers to young patients experiencing psychosis has contributed to this decreased timeline.
Tulane’s Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Services and CALM are hosting a night of art and music to bring awareness to psychosis. Dubbed “In My Mind,” the event is being held Friday, October 6, at the New Orleans Jazz Market on Oretha Castle Haley Boulevard. It will feature two local bands, The Nabil Muquit Quartet and Raph and the Rotation. In My Mind will also welcome special guest Michelle Hammer, an activist with schizophrenia who uses art and fashion to fight stigma. Art made by patients was a highlight of last year’s event, and In My Mind 2023 will include an art market where the young artists can show off and sell their creations.
The team has helped many patients return to their lives. Weiss explains that these recoveries take more than doctor and therapy visits: they also incorporate using art supplies, group programming, a tutoring service, a gym housed in the clinic, bus passes, and many more services that enhance recovery – all of which the In My Mind event raises much-needed funds to enable.
“We want this to be an event that belongs to the people with lived experience of psychosis,” said Weiss. “We also want it to be for the people who don’t know much about psychosis, to meet someone who’s going through it and doing well and hear their story. We can tell when people feel empowered not to be ashamed about their mental health. There’s a lot of hope.”
To buy tickets to In My Mind or make a gift, click here.