By 1812Blockhouse

In a significant boost for families in Richland and surrounding counties, Akron Children’s Hospital has unveiled an intensive outpatient program tailored for children and teenagers grappling with mental health issues. Nestled within the dedicated Behavioral Health Center at 1027 S. Trimble Rd., Mansfield, this initiative aims to provide a nurturing environment for young individuals facing depression, anxiety, and other behavioral health challenges.

Bridging the Gap in Mental Health Care

The introduction of the Partial Hospitalization Program (PHP) marks a pivotal stride towards enhancing the mental well-being of the youth in the community. This program is meticulously designed to offer an alternative to psychiatric inpatient treatment, fostering the ability of children and teens to remain within their communities while receiving the necessary care. Additionally, PHP serves as a crucial step-down from inpatient care, ensuring a smoother transition back to daily life.

PHP caters to individuals aged 12 to 18, offering a comprehensive schedule of individual, group, and family therapy sessions over a five-day week. Derrick Martin, the clinical operations supervisor for Akron Children’s Western Region, highlighted the program’s objective: “We teach teens skills to help change problem behavior, improve relationships and cope with stressful situations.” The average duration of stay ranges from 5 to 10 days, during which various therapeutic modalities are employed to foster resilience and healthy coping mechanisms.

A Focus on Family and Future

One of the cornerstone principles of PHP is the active involvement of parents in the therapeutic process. This approach underscores the importance of a supportive family environment in the recovery and development of healthy coping strategies among the youth. The program integrates dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT), an evidence-based psychotherapy known for its effectiveness in addressing mood disorders and altering problematic behavioral patterns.

In addition to therapy, the program ensures that participants do not fall behind in their academic obligations, allocating specific times for schoolwork. This holistic approach not only addresses the immediate mental health needs but also considers the long-term well-being and educational advancement of its participants.

How to Access the Program

For families considering the PHP for their children, Akron Children’s Hospital encourages them to reach out and learn more about the program. “We are very excited to bring these highly-specialized, pediatric-focused behavioral health programs to our community,” said Martin, reflecting the institution’s commitment to addressing the mental health crisis among young individuals. Parents and guardians interested in exploring this option can obtain further information by contacting Akron Children’s Hospital directly at 330-543-5015.

In a time when mental health challenges are increasingly coming to the forefront of public consciousness, the expansion of Akron Children’s Hospital’s behavioral health services in Mansfield stands as a beacon of hope. It promises not just immediate relief but a foundation for healthier, more resilient futures for the children and teenagers of Richland and neighboring counties.

Image by Mohamed Hassan from Pixabay

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