The Bipolar Disorders Program at our institution started officially in 2001 and is devoted to generate, disseminate, and apply knowledge on the causes, outcome, treatment, and prevention of bipolar disorder. The program is, therefore, aimed at research, education, and clinical care. Without research, no knowledge is available, without education, nobody is able to use it, and without clinical care, knowledge has no clinical application. Excellent clinical care is, therefore, the final aim of all the Program members’ efforts, and the reason why it is considered a reference center for treatment-resistant bipolar patients across Catalonia, Spain and even worldwide.

The Bipolar Disorders Program is supported by 4 institutions: Hospital Clinic (Institute of Neuroscience), University of Barcelona, Institut d’Investigacions Biomèdiques August Pi i Sunyer (IDIBAPS), and Instituto de Salud Carlos III (CIBERSAM). It has also received support from the Stanley Medical Research Institute, Fundació SENY, Fundació Roviralta, several non-profit organizations, and pharmaceutical companies. All funds are entirely devoted to enhance the progress in the understanding and care of people suffering from bipolar disorder.

The Program has a multidisciplinary approach, involving Psychiatrists, Psychologists, Pharmacologists, Biologists, Psychiatric Nurses, Social workers, and trainees. Both inpatient and outpatient care are provided on the grounds of best available medical and human care and therapy. The main research areas in which our program has made significant contributions are the neurobiology of the disease (genetics, neuromodulators, hormonal factors, neruoimaging), cognition and functional outcomes, clinical course and subtypes (bipolar I, bipolar II, schizoaffective, bipolar spectrum disorders), comorbidity, rating scales, pharmacological treatment, including new compounds, psychotherapy, represented mainly by patient and also family psychoeducation, and prevention of suicide.

All these investigation areas converge into one, which is the one aimed at assessing and improving the functional outcome of people with bipolar disorder, targeting a normal life.

During the last few years the Barcelona Bipolar Disorders Program has been at the forefront of therapeutic research, and as a result of this, most international treatment guidelines Include now compounds and therapies partially or even fully developed in our program. Our aim is to pursue even better medical care by increasing our efforts toward better research, education, and care to people suffering from bipolar illness.