Outpatient Care Patient Referrals

The Treatment Placement Specialists (TPS) assist professionals in their efforts to identify the most appropriate and effective programs for clients or patients who need services that are beyond the scope of what the referring professionals provide. When a referring professional determines that the needs and treatment objectives of his or her client or patient may be best met via outpatient care, a TPS representative can provide information about programs that provide the following forms of treatment:

Partial Hospitalization Programs (PHP)

As the most intensive type of outpatient care provided by programs within the TPS network, partial hospitalization programming provides significant structure and support. PHP may be ideal for individuals who can benefit from an intensive step-down level of care to support their transition out of a residential or inpatient program as well as for those whose needs do not rise to the level at which residential or inpatient treatment is needed.

The specifics of treatment at the partial hospitalization level may vary among programs, but the following general characteristics apply to most PHPs:

  • Treatment typically occurs during the day on weekdays. Care often starts in the morning and runs into the late afternoon or early evening. Participants often attend treatment Mondays through Fridays, though some may not attend every day.
  • Some PHPs offer off-site residency options, while others require participants to either live at home or in another non-program-related living environment.
  • Treatment in PHP may include individual, group, and family therapy. Groups are typically the main means of care. Medication management and other services may also be offered.
  • PHP participants must be ambulatory and able to fully engage in treatment, though some programs are able to accommodate individuals who have certain medical needs.

Intensive Outpatient Programs (IOP)

Intensive outpatient programming is a less intensive option than PHP, and can be an optimal option for patients who have already completed treatment at the residential and/or PHP level and who can benefit from structured step-down support as they transition out of care. IOP can also be beneficial to individuals whose needs are not severe enough to warrant inpatient, residential, or PHP treatment.

As is also the case with partial hospitalization programs within the TPS network, the specific practices and procedures of IOP treatment will vary among programs. However, the following are among the general characteristics of care within most IOPs:

  • Treatment in IOP is typically offered for three to four hours on weekdays. Some IOPs offer both morning and evening sessions to accommodate participants’ work, school, and personal schedules.
  • IOP participants usually attend treatment two or three days per week.
  • Most IOPs require participants to be ambulatory, able to fully engage in all treatment activities, and not in need of extensive medical care. Some programs are able to accommodate individuals who need dialysis or other forms of medical care.
  • IOP participants typically live at home or in a residence that is not affiliated with the IOP center. Some IOP centers offer transportation to and from treatment, while others expect participants to arrange for their own transportation.
  • Group therapy is typically the primary method of treatment in IOP. Individual, family, and experiential therapies may be available on either an ongoing or as-needed basis, depending upon the policies and structure of each program.

Traditional Outpatient Services

As the least restrictive type of outpatient care, traditional outpatient services may include individual therapy, group therapy, and similar experiences that occur on a weekly, biweekly, or even monthly basis. Many programs to which TPS representatives refer offer traditional outpatient services to program alumni as well as to family members of both current and former clients/patients. These services are typically designed to promote continued recovery, prevent relapse, and educate family members about the best ways to support their loved one’s continued healing. Traditional outpatient services may also be offered as a step-down level to facilitate a successful transition out of residential, PHP, or IOP care.

To learn more about outpatient treatment options within the TPS network, or for answers to any questions that you may have about any aspect of the TPS service, please feel free to contact Acadia Healthcare’s TPS team at your convenience.

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