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Clinical Grand Rounds January 12, 2018, 12:00 pm - 1:30 pm WPIC Auditorium

Clinical Grand Rounds 

Peer Support: The Face of Recovery 

 Kenneth Nash, MD, MMM
 Professor and Vice Chair for Clinical Affairs
 Department of Psychiatry
 University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine



 Chad Owens
 Youth Support Partner Specialist
 Youth and Family Training Institute





 Keirston Parham, CPS, CPSS, CWF
 Recovery and Peer Services Coordinator
 Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic of UPMC


Peer Support is a system of giving and receiving help founded on key principles of respect, shared responsibility, and mutual agreement of what is helpful. It is about understanding another’s situation empathically through the shared experience of emotional and psychological pain.  (Shery Mead, March 2003).  Peer support for people with similar life experiences (e.g., people who’ve lost children, people with addictions, people with MH challenges, etc.) has proven to be tremendously important towards helping many move through difficult situations (Reissman, 1989; Roberts & Rappaport, 1989). Peer support in mental health has recently gained significant attention. There is increasing talk about funding and credentialing, standards and outcomes.   Chad Owens and Keirston Parham (KP) both provide peer support services directly or indirectly.   Chad as a statewide coach and mentor for Youth Support Partners as part of High Fidelity Wraparound, and KP as the coordinator of peer support services at Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic of UPMC.  

Learning Objectives:   At the conclusion of this lecture, participants will be able to: 

  1. Define peer support.
  2. Discuss the key elements of peer support including engagement, empathy, support, planning, empowerment, natural supports, and hope.
  3. Explain the rationale for developing peer support as part of the mental health and addiction services at Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic of UPMC.

Continuing Education Credit:  The University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians.  The University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine designates this educational activity for a maximum of 1.5 AMA PRA Category 1 CreditsTM.  Each physician should only claim credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.  Other health care professionals are awarded .15 continuing education units (CEUs), which are equal to 1.5 contact hours.  In accordance with Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education requirements on disclosure, information about relationships of presenters with commercial interests (if any) will be included in materials which will be distributed at the time of the conference.  WPIC is approved by the American Psychological Association to offer continuing education for psychologists.  WPIC maintains responsibility for this program and its contents.  This program is being offered for 1.5 continuing education credits.

For more information regarding this lecture, please contact Frances Patrick (