CHC and Stanford Children’s Health Launch Expanded Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP) for High School Teens Facing Severe Mental Health Challenges
Just over a year ago, CHC opened its doors to a new Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP) for teens in Palo Alto. Now, in collaboration with Stanford Children’s Health, the program is expanding to serve more adolescents struggling with self-harm, suicidal thoughts and behaviors, severe anxiety and depression.
“CHC was founded on the belief that collaborations and partnerships are the key to successfully serving the community,” said Ramsey Khasho, PsyD, Chief Clinical Officer at CHC. “We are excited and proud to have leveraged the joint expertise of CHC and Stanford to provide more teens and families with the best care possible.”
The IOP covers the often overlooked but essential middle ground between weekly outpatient therapy and hospitalization, and provides transition support between the two. The program also offers a critical step-down option for teens discharged and returning from psychiatric inpatient or residential stays.
“The availability of an IOP is critical to allow the development of a continuum of care for teens with different levels of severity of mental health problems,” said Antonio Hardan, MD, in a recent Stanford Children’s Health press release. Dr. Hardan is chief of child and adolescent psychiatry at Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital Stanford.
The program’s name, RISE, was developed by IOP teens and stands for Reaching Interpersonal and Self Effectiveness, one of the primary goals of Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT) and a cornerstone of the program.
Stanford’s Michele Berk, PhD, brings a strong research-based expertise in DBT, a specialized intervention for individuals with suicidal and/or self-harm behaviors. Berk, who serves as the Director of DBT Programming at RISE, said recently in Reuters Health, “We finally have a treatment for adolescents that meets the gold standard for a `well-established’ evidence-based treatment for youth at high risk for suicide.”
Seasoned, licensed RISE clinicians trained through the Linehan Institute (founded by Marsha Linehan, PhD, the developer of DBT) provide all components of a comprehensive DBT program for adolescents, including: individual therapy, multi-family skills group, phone skills coaching and family therapy. The 12-week program is held four days per week after school so that participants can continue their normal school routines. Medication management and 24/7 phone coaching are available to teens for the duration of the program.
A hallmark of the RISE program is its inclusion of parents and guardians in treatment. Twice weekly, parents and guardians join their teens in a multifamily skills group where they learn and practice the skills necessary to manage teens’ symptoms. “It’s critical that parents and guardians learn the skills and feel empowered to support their teens through a time of crisis,” said Dr. Khasho.
Those who are eligible to participate in the RISE Program include teens (ages 14 to 18) with self-harm behaviors (i.e. cutting), suicidal thoughts and behaviors, and severe symptoms of anxiety or depression. Teens who will benefit most from this program include adolescents with significant decrease in functioning at school and at home (i.e. marked decline in grades, missing school); and those for whom weekly or biweekly outpatient therapy is not effective for reducing self-harm and suicide risk, and emotional dysregulation.
“Through CHC’s experience in the development and implementation of intensive mental health and academic programs and Stanford’s expertise in conducting research and providing care for adolescents with suicidal behavior, this program can be transformative for local adolescents who are in need of this level of care,” added Hardan.
The RISE program is open and accepting referrals now. Please call 650.688.3625 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to refer a patient.