NIMH Inpatient Research Program

The National Institute of Mental Health conducts an inpatient research program that specializes in the study of schizophrenia. The program is located on the NIH campus at the Clinical Center in Bethesda, Maryland. The research protocols vary as do the related risks and benefits to the participants.

Current studies focus on the neurobiological, cognitive, and genetic basis of schizophrenia. Qualifying adults who suffer from this disorder are invited to stay at NIMH without charge while they voluntarily participate in protocols. Every inpatient protocol requires that volunteers complete an initial thorough neurological, medical, psychiatric and neurocognitive evaluation. Volunteers may participate in different studies. A current 6 month evaluation study involves a (carefully monitored) 4-6 week period without medication. Other protocols involve the addition of Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved medications to the volunteers’ own medications. These clinical trials evaluate whether memory and other cognitive abilities can be improved by medications that regulate the activity of the frontal cortex.

All studies give participants access to the NIMH diagnostic expertise, careful medication management, and a variety of therapeutic and educational programs and comprehensive discharge recommendations. Research participation is compensated and travel and lodging assistance is available.

If you are interested in learning about the current studies and whether they may or may not be suitable for you or your family member, please call the schizophrenia referral line at 1-888-674-6464 (TTY: 1-866-411-1010) or email us at

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