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Coordinated Specialty Care Fact Sheet and Checklist

Coordinated specialty care (CSC) is a general term used to describe recovery-oriented treatment programs for people with first episode psychosis (FEP). CSC uses a team of health professionals and specialists who work with the client to create a personal treatment plan based on the client’s life goals and preferences.

The team offers recovery-oriented psychotherapy, medication management geared to individuals with FEP, case management, employment and education support, and family education and support. The client and the team work together to make treatment decisions, involving family members as much as possible.

Compared to typical care for FEP, CSC has been shown to be more effective at reducing symptoms, improving quality of life and increasing involvement in work or school. There are many different programs that can be considered coordinated specialty care. In the United States, examples of CSC programs include (but are not limited to) NAVIGATE, the Connection Program, OnTrackNY, the Specialized Treatment Early in Psychosis (STEP) program, and the Early Assessment and Support Alliance (EASA). For help finding a CSC program in your area, visit the Patients and Families section of the RAISE webpage: http://www.nimh.nih.gov/raise.

CSC Checklist

If you are interested in a CSC program, talk with the program’s service providers and ask if they offer the following components of coordinated specialty care:

  • A treatment program that uses a team-based approach
  • Treatment planning that involves the client in all treatment decisions, and family members when possible
  • A treatment team that provides the following services:
    • Case management
    • Recovery-oriented psychotherapy
    • Medication management geared to individuals with FEP
    • Supported employment and education
    • Coordination with primary care services
    • Family education and support

National Institute of Mental Health

NIH Publication No. OM 16-4304