Chair of HBSE Sequence Ora Nakash, Ph.D., Awarded Grant 

Professor Ora Nakash, M.A., Ph.D., received an NIH Exploratory/Developmental Research Grant Award (R21) along with colleagues from Indiana University to develop an intervention to improve the quality of care for adolescents with Disruptive, Impulse-Control, and Conduct disorders (DIC) and their low income and/or minority parents. 

For adolescents with DIC, behavioral health care is complex, long-term, and requires parental participation. Research shows providers have biases and limited skills and confidence to communicate with parents to encourage them to voice their concerns and care preferences. Low income and minority parents are at greatest risk of not being involved in their adolescents’ behavioral health care, having poor interactions with providers, and are more likely to perceive poor quality of their adolescents’ behavioral health care and low treatment engagement. If unaddressed, poor parent-provider interactions interfere with adolescents’ retention in behavioral health care.

Nakash and her research team will draw upon an evidence-based DECIDE intervention [Decide the problem; Explore the questions; Closed or open-ended questions; Identify the who, why, or how of the problem; Direct questions to health care professional; Enjoy a shared solution], which they developed and tested in a previous study, and will adapt the intervention to the needs of low-income minorities adolescents and their parents who seek mental health services. 

“This is exciting news for us and we hope to be able to generate clinical research that will benefit those who are most disenfranchised.”  - Nakash

This project will be the first of its kind in providing an evidence-based intervention targeted at both parents and providers to optimize their interactions and improve behavioral health care for adolescents with DIC. 

For more information on this grant, visit the NIH website.