Following are a number of frequently asked questions regarding the PIER Model, PIER Model Training & Certification and Family Psychoeducation. If your question is not answered below, please contact us and we will be happy to help.

PIER Model and PIER Model Training & Certification

The PIER Model treats the earliest symptoms of mental illness. It was developed on a foundation of ongoing research that indicates that early mental illness can be avoided or reversed by earlier treatment. Through a combination of family psychoeducation, supported education and employment, and health and medical treatment, the PIER Model has a powerful effect in reducing the symptoms that place a young person at risk for the onset of severe mental illness or for severe impairments after a first episode.

In addition to the PIER Model’s use of evidence-based treatments, the critical feature of this approach is community outreach by a clinical team to school professionals, general practitioners, pediatricians, and other key groups to educate and inform about the early signs of mental illness. Under the direction of William R. McFarlane, MD, the PIER staff has more experience with systematic implementation of family psychoeducational interventions than any other group in the U.S.

The PIER Model is designed for adolescents and young adults between the ages of 12 and 25. Young people in the program are assessed by a trained interviewer to determine the extent of symptoms.
The PIER Model Training consists of a 5-day in-person training by experts in each of the PIER Model components: Assessments, Treatment and Family Psychoeducation; three 2-hour webinars in Community Outreach; a 4-hour teleconference in Supported Education/Supported Employment and extensive supervision for 24 months. You can learn more about PIER Model Training & Certification and download the training agenda (PDF).
If your organization has decided to become a PIER Model Program, it must allocate the proper funding and fulfill the recommended staffing requirements. It is also important to ensure the community support that is critical to its successful implementation.

In addition, it is recommended that the agency have full support from its management team and leadership when the agency signs on for PIER Model Training & Certification. Full participation from agency members in the supervision process is critical to the model’s success. Supervision and monitoring help guarantee adherence to the PIER Model and occurs after training and during site visits, as well as through regular reporting by the agency, which includes videotaped sessions. Videotaping equipment must be provided by the agency.

The following staff is recommended to serve a population of 300,000-450,000: one full-time Master’s level Social Worker; one full-time Nurse, or additional Master’s level Social Worker; one half-time Psychiatrist or Nurse Practitioner; one half-time Occupational Therapist; one half-time Education/Employment Specialist and one half- to full-time Case Manager/Peer Counsellor.

Staff size should increase as the service area increases. A service area with a population of 1 million people requires a minimum of 3-4 full-time Social Workers, 1.5 full-time Psychiatrists or Nurse Practitioners, 1 Occupational Therapist, 1 full-time Education/Employment Specialist and 1 full-time Case Manager/Peer Counsellor. Learn more about PIER Model Staffing requirements.

To inquire about the costs of the program for your organization, contact the PIER Training Institute staff at 207-210-1014 or via email at PTI [at] maine.rr.com You may also fill out the inquiry form on our Contact page.
For more information about the PIER Model or PIER Model Training & Certification, contact the PIER Training Institute staff at 207-210-1014 or via email at PTI [at] maine.rr.com You may also fill out the inquiry form on our Contact page.

Family Psychoeducation

Family Psychoeducation training consists of advanced preparation and reading, three days of in-person training (PDF), and extensive supervision for 24 months.
Advanced preparation for Family Psychoeducation Training includes reading from Dr. McFarlane’s book “Multifamily Groups in the Treatment of Severe Psychiatric Disorders,” downloading and reading materials from the SAMHSA website, viewing the online video Schizophrenia Explained, and reading the article “Educating Families”.  You can access these materials at the bottom of the Is This Right For You? page.
To inquire about the costs of the program for your organization, contact the PIER Training Institute staff at 207-210-1014 or via email at PTI [at] maine.rr.com You may also fill out the inquiry form on our Contact page.
For more information about the Family Psychoeducation Training & Certification, contact the PIER Training Institute staff at 207-2101-1014 or via email at PTI [at] maine.rr.com You may also fill out the inquiry form on our Contact page.