Center of Excellence Personnel - MIRECC / CoE
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Center of Excellence Personnel

 Peter C. Britton, Ph.D.

VA Appointment: Investigator
Academic Affiliation: Assistant Professor, Department of Psychiatry,
University of Rochester Medical Center
Research Affiliate: Center for Integrated Healthcare, Syracuse VAMC

Peter B.

Contact Info  
(585) 393-7926 


Research Interests

My research focuses on understanding and preventing suicide attempts, suicide, and unintentional overdoses in high-risk populations including Veterans. My primary interest has been the development and examination of brief, person-centered, interventions for suicide prevention. I am currently testing the impact of Motivational Interviewing to Address Suicidal Ideation (MI-SI) on the severity of suicidal ideation with psychiatrically hospitalized Veterans.

A secondary interest of mine is the study of risk and protective factors for suicide attempts and suicide. I am currently studying risk and protective factors in the weeks, months, and years following discharge from psychiatric inpatient units, using VA administrative, clinical, and suicide databases. A peripheral interest of mine is the differentiation of unintentional from intentional overdoses, particularly among individuals who abuse substances. I also value my collaborations with researchers inside and outside VA on projects studying brief, preventive interventions, risk and protective factors among female Veterans, and the impact of reintegration experiences on opioid misuse in young Veterans.

Current Funding

2018-Present Grant: I21HX002665 Developing Public Messaging Strategies to Facilitate Help Seekng among Veterans at Risk for Suicide Co-I
The objective of this pilot study is to identify characteristics of effective public messages that facilitate help seeking among Veterans at high risk for suicide.
2017-Present Grant: 10P9H Veterans Crisis Line (VCL) Researcher-in-Residence PI
The purpose of this project is to develop a strategy to examine the effectiveness of the Veterans Crisis Line (VCL), and to initiate a program of research to study it..  
2017-Present Grant: I01HX002434 Advancing Suicide Prevention for Female Veterans Co-I
This study seeks to inform gender-tailored VHA suicide prevention approaches and identify priority areas for futures research regarding female veterans at risk for suicide.
2014-Present Grant: I01HX001587 Facilitating use of the Veterans Crisis Lines in High Risk Patients Co-I
The aim of this study is to test the impact of a brief intervention to increase Veteran Crisis Line usage in high risk Veterans on Crisis Line usage, health service usage, and suicide attempts.  

Past Funding

2014-2018 Grant: R01DA036754 Opioid Misuse and Overdose Risk Patterns in Recent Veterans Co-I
The aim of this study is to track the changing dimensions of Veterans’ reintegration experiences that impact prescription opioid misuse behavior and other substance use patterns.  
2012-2017 Clinical Science Research and Development (CSR&D) Motivational interviewing to reduce risk for suicide in Veterans PI
The aim of this project is to test the efficacy of Motivational Interviewing to Address Suicidal Ideation (MI-SI) with psychiatrically hospitalized Veterans at high risk for suicide.  
2011-2012 VA Mental Health Quality Enhancement Research Initiative (QUERI) Influences on call outcomes among Veteran callers to the National Crisis Line PI
The aim of this project is to examine the associations between call characteristics and outcomes for the Veterans Crisis Line.  
2009-2011 DoD Deployment Related Medical Research Program, Office of Congressionally Directed Medical Research Program Development of an Intervention for Soldiers and Veterans with Co-Occurring Traumatc Brain Injury and Substance Abuse Co-I
This study will design a novel SA intervention and related treatment manual and educational materials for individuals who served in the military and have co-occurring mild TBI and SA.  
2009-2011 VISN 2 Center of Excellence for Suicide Prevention Pilot Study of A Brief Intervention for Hospitalized Veterans PI
The aim is to pilot the use of Motivational Interviewing to Prevent Suicide with psychiatrically hospitalized Veterans.  
2006-2008 American Foundation for Suicide Prevention Suicide Attempt Registry Co-I
The aim was to pilot interviews in the Psychiatric Emergency Department to use in a suicide attempt registry.  
2005-2007 American Foundation for Suicide Prevention Developing an Intervention for Patients with Substance Use Disorders at Acute Risk for Suicidal Behavior Co-I
The aim was to develop a brief intervention suitable for an emergency department setting that promotes follow through with subsequent treatment, lowering risk for suicidal behavior.  
2005-2007 Natonal Institute of Health National Research Service Award (NRSA) Co-I
The aim was to help postdoctoral fellows establish a career as an independent investigator in suicide and prevention research.