SNF Nostos


Devine Cruz

Devine Cruz is a 21-year-old woman who was born and raised in Washington Heights, New York. At the age of 9, she began experiencing auditory and visual hallucinations.  Devine’s childhood and teenage years consisted of nearly a dozen psychiatric hospitalizations with diagnoses ranging from Bipolar Disorder and Schizophrenia, to Schizoaffective Disorder, with an underwhelming response to conventional pharmacological treatments despite lengthy hospital admissions. By June 2022, at the age of 20, Devine was taking 7 different medications for her mental health, at which point her care was transferred to Columbia University Medical Center and the New York State Psychiatric Institute under the supervision of Dr. Sander Markx. Devine was subsequently diagnosed and treated for the autoimmune disorder Neuropsychiatric Systemic Lupus Erythematosus, with complete resolution of her mental health symptoms and cognitive function. She now lives independently with her family in Washington Heights and the Bronx, New York, enjoys writing poetry, drawing and painting, and hopes to pursue a career in Art Therapy to help other individuals with mental health disorders.