Anxiety Treatment Research Clinic (ATRC)
What this program does...
The Anxiety Treatment and Research Clinic's mission is to provide excellence and leadership in evidence based clinical service, education and research for anxiety disorders.
Our team of experts offer comprehensive evaluations and proven treatments for anxiety-related conditions. Treatments at the ATRC include both medications and effective psychological treatments. Our interdisciplinary staff is available to consult with your family doctor, psychiatrist and other professionals who are involved in your care. A physician referral is required to access care at the ATRC – for more information on how to access the clinic, please review our Referral Section.
Anxiety Disorder is an umbrella term that covers several different presentations of anxiety characterized by irrational and excessive fear, apprehensive and tense feelings, and difficulty managing daily tasks and/or distress related to these tasks. Research shows that up to one in four adults has an anxiety disorder sometime in their life, and that one person in 10 is likely to have had an anxiety disorder in the past year. Anxiety disorders are the most common mental health problem in women, and are second only to substance use disorders in men.*
*Adapted from Anxiety Disorders: An Information Guide © 2009 Centre for Addiction and Mental Health
At St. Joseph’s Healthcare Hamilton’s Anxiety Treatment and Research Clinic, we care for people with the following conditions:
- Panic Disorder
- Social Anxiety Disorder
- Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
- Generalized Anxiety Disorder
- Specific Phobias
How this program helps...
The good news about anxiety disorders is that they are treatable.
We provide treatments that have been evaluated by research to be effective in the treatment of anxiety disorders. We also provide monthly "booster groups" for people who have completed our treatment program and want additional support.
The ATRC is committed to providing learners from various health care disciplines with training in state-of-the-art assessment and treatment methods for anxiety disorders to develop the expertise of future health care professionals to address anxiety-related problems and increase the accessibility of treatment options. As such, psychology or psychiatry residents and other closely supervised trainees regularly provide assessments and treatments.
We continually evaluate the treatments that we provide, so in the course of your treatment you may be asked to complete questionnaires or participate in other studies. Participation in any research study is completely voluntary. The Hamilton Integrated Research Ethics Board at St. Joseph’s Healthcare Hamilton and McMaster University has approved all studies conducted in our clinic.
We carry a full line of books on anxiety disorders and related topics for professionals and self-help. You can purchase a book from the Outpatient Pharmacy located in the Main Lobby of St. Joseph's Healthcare Hamilton. You may also find them at the public library, order them online, or from your local bookstore. Please see the ATRC Bookstore section on this website for a list of available books for sale.
The Centre's Hours of Operation are: Monday to Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
For more information please contact:
Judy Odom, Patient Services Coordinator
Tel: 905-522-1155 ext. 33697
Patient Referrals can be faxed to: 905-521-6120
Randi E. McCabe, Ph.D., C. Psych
Richard P. Swinson, MD, FRCPC
Martin M. Antony, Ph.D., ABPP
To be seen at the Anxiety Treatment and Research Clinic, patients must have a referral from a physician (e.g., your family doctor, a psychiatrist, or another physician).
Patient Referrals can be faxed to: 905-521-6120
Our staff reviews referrals and in some cases we may contact the patient to get further information. If the ATRC appears to be an appropriate service, an assessment visit is scheduled for a more detailed evaluation. Note that an assessment does not guarantee treatment at the ATRC. A copy of our assessment report and treatment recommendations will be sent to the referring physician.
To ensure continuity of care all patients must have a GP to receive service from our clinic.
Teaching and Training
The clinic is involved in the training of health-care professionals. It is possible that psychiatric residents, clinical psychology residents, or other closely supervised trainees may provide some of your assessments and treatments.
Our commitment to providing clinicians with specialized training in the treatment of anxiety will increase the range of treatment options available to people suffering from anxiety problems.
Contacts for Training at the ATRC:
Randi E. McCabe, Ph.D., C.Psych
For information about Residency and Practicum Training in Psychology at St. Joseph's Healthcare, follow the link to http://psychology.stjoes.ca.
Richard Swinson, MD, FRCP
Linda Cox, M.S.W.
Carrie Bullard, RN, MN, CPMHN(C)
Clinical Nurse Specialist
Jane Reynolds, RN
Randi E. McCabe, Ph.D., C.Psych
We are continually trying to learn more about the causes of anxiety and the best ways to help people to overcome their anxiety problems. Our staff is internationally known for publishing numerous books and scientific papers on the nature and treatment for anxiety disorders. Through research at the ATRC and similar clinics around the world, there have been enormous advances in the treatment of anxiety in recent years.
Eligibility for participation in these studies is determined by clinical and research staff following your initial assessment. Participation is never mandatory, and a decision to decline study participation will in no way detract from or interfere with your treatment.
All studies at the ATRC have been reviewed and approved by the Hamilton Integrated Research Ethics Board at St. Joseph's Healthcare, Hamilton and McMaster University.
To read about some of the previous research work done by our Staff/Researchers, please go to: Staff/Researchers Publications.
CURRENT PROJECTS at the ATRC
Understanding Stress in General Anxiety Disorder
The study is open to people who are planning to participate in group treatment for GAD. We would invite you to the Anxiety Treatment and Research Centre for approximately 2.5 hours one afternoon before treatment. You would fill out some questionnaires, complete tasks on the computer, and rate your mood during different activities. In appreciation for your help, you will receive $20 plus the cost of parking.
Understanding Post-Event Processing in Social Anxiety Disorder
Contact: Karen Rowa, Ph.D., C.Psych
Description: This study is looking at what leads to post-event processing for people with social anxiety. Post-event processing is when people ruminate about a social encounter after the fact and it is thought to be very unhelpful for people with social anxiety.
This study is open to people before they begin cognitive behavioural therapy for Social Anxiety Disorder. We would invite you to the ATRC for a 1.5 to 2 hour appointment where you would complete a few short questionnaires, complete tasks on the computer, and rate your mood during different activities. Then, you would be asked to complete a few short questionnaires 5 days after the meeting. In appreciation for your help, you will receive a $20 Tim Horton’s gift card and your parking at the hospital will be covered.
Exploring Family Burden in Anxiety Disorders
Contact: Carrie Bullard, RN, MN, CPMHN(C)
Contact: Jane Reynolds, RN, MN, CPMHN(C)
Description:The purpose of this study is to develop a stronger understanding of family burden through conducting interviews with family members involved in the care of patients with anxiety disorders. The end goal is to incorporate families’ lived experiences into the development and evaluation of supports that will be provided at the ATRC for family members.
This study is open to any family member who is providing care and residing with an individual who is currently treated at the Anxiety Treatment and Research Centre (ATRC). The participant will meet with a nurse from the ATRC for an interview that will last approximate 1.5 hrs. All participants will receive a $20 gift card to Chapters/Indigo/Coles Book Store as a thank you for participating in this study. A free parking voucher will also be provided for the day of your interview.
Poor Insight in Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder: Examining the Role of Cognitive, Metacognitive, and Neuropsychological Variables
Contact: Heather Hood, MA, Ryerson University
Tel: 416-979-5000, ext. 2184
Description: The purpose of this study is to explore how people's beliefs and neuropsychological functioning are related to impaired insight in OCD. This information will help us understand what poor insight is and how to best target these factors to improve treatment outcomes.
This study is open to people with a primary diagnosis of OCD. If you agree to participate, you will be asked to attend a single 2 hour research session at the Anxiety Treatment and Research Centre. You will complete a brief interview, answer some questionnaires on a computer, and complete a short series of neuropsychological tests that involve solving problems on a computer, verbally, and on paper. You will receive $30 to thank you for your time and participation.