The following letter is an example of Hamm Clinic's collaborations with community researchers.


Text Box: DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS  VISN 17 Center of Excellence for Research on Returning War Veterans  Waco VA Medical Center Campus  4800 Memorial Drive  Waco, TX  76711   


Text Box: lOctober 26, 2016

  In Reply Refer To:  674/151C


Hamm Memorial Psychiatric Clinic

Board of Executives

408 St. Peter Street, Suite 429

St. Paul, MN 55102


Dear Hamm Memorial Psychiatric Clinic:


Thank you so much for your generous support of my research efforts and professional development. De-identified research data from the Hamm Memorial Psychiatric Clinic was used to illustrate cutting edge statistical methods for identifying patterns of change over time that differ from the average. A manuscript

using this data was recently published in The Counseling Psychologist, the sponsored journal of the

American Psychological Association, Society of Counseling Psychologists (Division 17). The citation is, Frankfurt, S., Frazier, P., Syed, M., & Jung, K. (2016Using group-based trajectory and latent growth mixture modeling to identify change trajectory classes. The Counseling Psychologist, 44(5), 622-660. doi: 10.1177/0011000016658097.


The Hamm Memorial Psychiatric Clinic has a remarkable repository of data that can be employed to meaningfully improve our understanding of how therapy works, and for whom it is most and least effective. I hope that I can continue to collaborate with Hamm Clinic staff and affiliated researchers. It was an honor and pleasure to complete my predoctoral clinical internship at the Hamm Clinic.


Thank you again.




Sheila Frankfurt, PhD, OAA Postdoctoral Fellow

VISN 17 Center of Excellence for Research on Returning War Veterans

Advanced Fellowship Program in Mental Illness Research  and Treatment

Central Texas Veterans Healthcare System

4800 Memorial Drive (151C), Waco, Texas 76711


 Mayo Clinic Psychopharmacogenomic Study

In 2010 we collaborated with Mayo Clinic to evaluate the benefit of using a pharmacogenomic report to guide psychiatrists’ selection and dosing of medications for clients diagnosed with Major Depressive Disorder (MDD). Pharmacogenomics is the branch of pharmacology that correlates an individual’s genetic profile with their response to a drug's efficacy or toxicity. Thus, pharmacogenomics aims to optimize drug therapy, with respect to the clients' genotype, to ensure maximum efficacy with minimal adverse effects. This approach is the basis for personalized medicine" in which drugs and drug combinations are optimized for each individual's unique genetic makeup.

This study used DNA from a cheek swab, collected by Mayo’s on-site researcher. The swab was then sent to a lab for testing. The lab determined the client’s genetic profile and using an algorithm produced an interpretive report indicating which antidepressants would have the greatest likelihood of success for that client. Fifty one clients with MDD were recruited for the study, with 26 in the comparison group and 25 in the intervention group. The comparison group comprised those clients in which the interpretive reports were not shared with the prescribing psychiatrist until 8 weeks into treatment. This established a baseline of care at Hamm Clinic. The intervention phase followed and comprised clients whose interpretive reports were shared with the psychiatrists prior to treatment to determine whether having additional information impacted the client’s recovery.

Results indicated that the reduction in depressive symptoms achieved in the intervention group was greater than the reduction of depressive symptoms in the comparison group. An article entitled ‘Using a Pharmacogenomic Algorithm to Guide the Treatment of Depression’ has been submitted for publication and is currently under review.


Right Question Project-Mental Health

In 2009 and 2010 Hamm Clinic collaborated with Harvard University and University of Minnesota researchers on the Right Question Project. The Right Question Project intervention aimed to improve client-provider interactions and to increase patient involvement and decision making, by building clients’ skills to obtain information from providers, clarify expectations of treatment, and become active participants in care. This study was implemented in a three-pronged approach:


  • Coaching to Care Managers
  • Trainings for Patients
  • Treatment Adherence and Fidelity Checks


After adjusting for age, sex, race/ethnicity, and education, intervention subjects were over three times more likely to be retained in treatment than comparison clients. In terms of engagement, intervention clients were over four times more likely to be engaged in care than comparison clients.  When assessing the intensity of visits for having at least one visit, intervention subjects were 28% more likely to be engaged in treatment than comparison clients. Read the full research article here.