Patricia Areán, PhD

I am an international expert on effectiveness of behavioral interventions for mood disorders in special populations such as older adults and ethnic minorities. I lead a research and training group known for developing, studying, increasing access to and implementing user friendly, high quality behavioral interventions for mood as it presents in chronic illness, aging, low income and ethnic minority populations, in a variety of service settings: mental health, primary care, senior services, and mobile platforms. My team combines the latest information from cognitive neuroscience, socio-economics and implementation science in their designs.

Since 1994, I have published 125 peer-reviewed articles on these topics and she has been funded by SAMHSA, NIMH, NIA, NIDDK and the Hartford Foundation. I am currently funded by NIMH to study the effectiveness of “brain games” on mood and the effectiveness of a modularized psychotherapy for late life depression, and recently completed two large scale, fully remote RCTs in English and in Spanish. My work has won national recognition, resulting in an early career award from the American Psychological Association and The Award for Achievements in Diversity in Mental Health from the American Association of Geriatric Psychiatry.

I also provides training in evidence-based treatments to community mental health and health professionals, and am developing deployable and cost effective training models based on contemporary adult learning methods. I am a noted expert in career mentoring and am currently the co-director of workforce development in translational sciences. ​


Clinical Services Research, UCSF, 1991-1991
Psycholgy, Bellevue Hospital, 1990-1991
PhD, Psychology, New Jersey, 1987-1991

Department Affiliations

Clinical Expertise

Teaching Philosophy

Clinical Interests and Expertise
  • Depressive disorders
  • Neurocognitive disorders
Research Interests and Expertise
  • Research Expertise
    • Depressive disorders
    • Neurocognitive disorders

Recent Publications

Behavioral Activation and Depression Symptomatology: Longitudinal Assessment of Linguistic Indicators in Text-Based Therapy Sessions.
(2021 Jul 14)
J Med Internet Res 23(7): e28244
Burkhardt HA, Alexopoulos GS, Pullmann MD, Hull TD, Areán PA, Cohen T

Preventing depression in older people with multimorbidity: 24-month follow-up of a trial of internet-delivered cognitive behaviour therapy.
(2021 Jul 12)
Age Ageing
Read JR, Sharpe L, Burton AL, Areán PA, Raue PJ, McDonald S, Titov N, Gandy M, Dear BF

Mental Health and Perceived Usability of Digital Mental Health Tools among Essential Workers and Unemployed during COVID-19: A Remote Survey Study.
(2021 May 16)
JMIR Ment Health
Arean P, Mata-Greve F, Johnson M, Pullmann M, Griffith Fillipo I, Comtois K, Friedman E

Using Real-world Data for Decision Support: Recommendations from a Primary Care Provider Survey.
(2021 May)
Perm J 25():
Areán PA, Friedman EC, Pratap A, Allred R, Duffy J, Gille S, Reetz S, Keast E, Clarke G

Perceived Utility and Characterization of Personal Google Search Histories to Detect Data Patterns Proximal to a Suicide Attempt in Individuals Who Previously Attempted Suicide: Pilot Cohort Study.
(2021 May 6)
J Med Internet Res 23(5): e27918
Areán PA, Pratap A, Hsin H, Huppert TK, Hendricks KE, Heagerty PJ, Cohen T, Bagge C, Comtois KA

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