Places for People has a long history of research, evaluation, and program development, which has led to service innovations to provide better care and healthier outcomes for people living with mental illness and substance use disorders.


Research, evaluation and program development offers many benefits at Places for People and in our community.

Our Research and Evaluation program provides benefits to individuals we serve, our employees, and our community:

  • Expands services, especially evidence-based practices
  • Improves quality of services
  • Increases staff training, knowledge, skills


Places for People tracks outcomes for individuals served over 11 core domains.

Tracking outcomes over 11 core domains provides many benefits to our organization, the greater behavioral health community, and the community at-large, including:

  • Provides information about service and program outcomes
  • Helps to identify and refine treatment strategies for high-risk/high-need groups and individuals
  • Can be integrated with treatment planning
  • Demonstrates service client outcomes accountability to funders and decision makers
  • Improves marketability within health care system dynamics

Special Projects

Places for People has been fortunate to receive funding to expand programs and provide innovative services for people living with serious mental illness and substance use.

Some of our current special projects include:

3-2-1 Project

Places for People received a five-year grant from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) to provide treatment to people who are homeless and also strengthen the available evidence-based practices for providers in the St. Louis region.

Read more on the Perspectives blog.

CCBHC Expansion

Places for People recently received a two-year federal grant in 2018 from SAMHSA to expand access to behavioral health services for people who are uninsured and underinsured in the St. Louis region.


In October 2015 Places for People received a four-year grant from SAMHSA through the Primary and Behavioral Health Care Integration Program (PBHCI). The grant allowed Places for People to expand and enhance its primary care infrastructure by providing additional hours for nurses directly on treatment teams, and hiring a peer wellness coach and a fitness/nutrition specialist to provide individual and group education. The PBHCI program wrapped up on September 30, 2019.


Recent publications

One way Places for People shares information gained through programs is through articles published in professional and scientific journals.

See more publications

Title: “The relationship between PTSD factors and depression in a chronically homeless sample”
Publication: Journal of Social Distress and the Homeless
Authors: Nathaniel A. Dell, Jin Huang, Gary Morse, and Pallavi Nishith

Overview: The relationship between post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and major depressive disorder (MDD) is the subject of ongoing inquiry. Homeless adults with psychiatric illnesses are at risk for comorbid PTSD and MDD. However, the factor structures of commonly used screening tools for PTSD (PCL-5) and MDD (PHQ-9), and their interrelationships, have not been widely investigated in this population. This article tests the factor structure of the PCL-5 and PHQ-9 in a sample of chronically homeless adults who reported lifetime trauma exposure and were enrolled into intensive community mental health services.


Title: “Implementing illness management and recovery within assertive community treatment teams: A qualitative study.”
Publication: Psychiatric Rehabilitation Journal
Authors: Dr. Gary Morse, Places for People Vice President of Research and Development, Maria Monroe-DeVita, Mary York, Roselyn Peterson, Joris Miller, MacKenzie Hughes, Elizabeth Carpenter-Song, Christopher Akiba, and Gregory McHugo

Overview: The study’s purpose was to assess the feasibility, advantages/disadvantages, and factors that hinder or facilitate the implementation of illness management and recovery (IMR) within assertive community treatment (ACT) teams.

Read more on the Perspectives blog.


Title: “Alcohol expectancies in persons with severe mental illness and posttraumatic stress disorder.”
Publication:  Cogent Medicine
Authors: Pallavi Nishith, Ph.D. of Places for People, Dr. Gary Morse, Places for People Vice President of Research and Development, and Dr. Kim T. Mueser, a clinical psychologist and Professor at the Center for Psychiatric Rehabilitation at Boston University

Overview: The study compared alcohol use expectancies between individuals with a serious mental illness and PTSD with an alcohol use disorder, to individuals with serious mental illness and PTSD without an alcohol use disorder.

Read more on the Perspectives Blog.


Title: “Loneliness and depressive symptoms in middle aged and older adults experiencing serious mental illness,”
Publication: Psychiatric Rehabilitation Journal
Authors: Places for People Research and Evaluation Team Leader Nathan Dell, AM, MSW, LCSW, and Research Interviewers Allison Murphy, MSW, LMSW, and Michelle Pelham, MSW

Overview: The article highlights the high prevalence of loneliness among older adults who receive intensive case management services, and identifies the unique relationship of loneliness to depressive symptoms. Emotional loneliness—the perceived inadequacy of intimate relationships—may be an important target for intervention to promote the quality of life among persons with serious mental illness.

Read more on the Perspectives Blog.

Training Opportunities

Our trained professionals are ready to share expertise and experiences about evidence-based practices.

Call 314-535-5600

Contact Center of Excellence Director of Training and Technical Assistance Julie Blanco to discuss opportunities for agency- or team-centered trainings.

Center of Excellence