Behavioral Health Outpatient Services
Behavioral Health Outpatient Services
As part of our Behavioral Health Services, individuals who do not require 24-hour treatment for psychiatric problems and/or issues with chemical dependency can receive additional support from St. Joseph Hospital. With a full range of psychiatric services, our program offers outpatient treatment for individuals 18 years or older.
St. Joseph Hospital offers various programs and tracks to assist patients with psychiatric needs.
Outpatient programs and services
Partial Hospital Program (PHP)
Open Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., the Partial Hospital Program (PHP) offers treatment for individuals with a psychiatric or co-occurring psychiatric and chemical dependence problem on an outpatient basis.
Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP)
Designed for patients who do not require intensive treatment, the Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP) provides treatment for the same psychiatric or co-occurring treatment needs as the more intensive inpatient and partial hospital programs in a three-hour per day structure.
Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) Therapy for Major Depressive Disorder
Proven to be a safe and effective treatment to help patients achieve long term remission from major depressive disorder (MDD), transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) therapy is FDA-approved for patients with MDD who have not been able to regain their quality of life from talk and/or medication therapies alone.
St. Joseph Hospital is proud to be the first hospital in Orange County to offer TMS therapy for the treatment of depression. Approved by the Food and Drug Administration for patients with major depressive disorder, this treatment provides an alternative to medications and is less invasive than electroconvulsive therapy (ECT). Benefits include:
- Few reported side effects
- Long-term symptom relief
- Covered by most insurance plans
How does TMS therapy work?
TMS therapy works by using a pulsed magnetic field to stimulate a specific area of the brain (left prefrontal cortex) involved in mood regulation. The magnetic stimulation delivers pinpoint accuracy to the targeted brain region, which results in an improved mood. TMS is delivered through a small, curved device with a magnetic coil that rests on the patient’s head. Patients remain awake and alert during each TMS therapy session, which takes less than 20 minutes to complete. Patients can resume normal activities immediately after the treatment session is complete. The most common side effect reported with TMS therapy is mild discomfort near the treatment site, which typically subsides after the first week of treatments.
Am I eligible for TMS therapy?
For people with depression who have not benefited from antidepressant medication, TMS therapy can offer hope for long-lasting relief of symptoms. If you agree with two or more of these statements, TMS therapy may be right for you.
- Depression symptoms have interfered with my daily life.
- I am not satisfied with the results I get from depression medication.
- I have had or worry about side effects from depression medications.
- I have switched medications for depression due to side effects.
- I am interested in a proven, non-drug therapy for depression.
Please speak with your physician to determine if TMS therapy is right for you. For information about referrals, email us.
Will my insurance cover TMS therapy?
Most insurance plans, including Medicare and Tricare, cover TMS therapy. If your insurance does not cover this treatment, please speak with one of our Patient Financial Advisors by calling 800-378-4189 to find out if you are eligible to enroll in our Patient Financial Assistance Program.
Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT)
Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) is a procedure that uses electricity to create chemical changes in the brain that can treat severe depression and other mental illnesses. This procedure is administered by highly qualified and specially trained psychiatrists.
What are the benefits of ECT?
ECT has many benefits that have the ability to help you or a loved one suffering from mental disorders (bipolar disorder or schizophrenia), or certain illnesses like Parkinson’s disease.
If used properly, ECT:
- Can be very effective in helping patients return to happy and productive lives.
- Can provide faster relief. In many cases, ECT can produce faster results than antidepressant medications or psychotherapy. This is useful for patients who need immediate relief.
- Has few risks and has very few side effects. The strict guidelines for ECT use help to ensure its safety for patients.
Who should/shouldn’t use ECT?
Pregnant women and older adults can use ECT. It is often used when antidepressants are not an option. It may not be recommended for patients, including those who have brain tumors, or have had a recent stroke or heart attack.
Facts about ECT to help you make an informed decision
- ECT is used to help people, not hurt them. A person must give informed consent to receive treatment.
- Studies show that a permanent inability to form new memories is highly unlikely.
- There is no scientific evidence that ECT causes brain damage.
- During the procedure, the patient sleeps peacefully and feels no discomfort. Some patients may feel nauseated or have a headache when they wake up. These feelings usually pass within 30 to 60 minutes and can be treated with medication, if needed.
- Many patients receive one series (6 to 12 treatments) of ECT and have no repeat episodes of severe depression.
- In most cases, body movement is very mild. Muscle relaxants are given to prevent shaking or jerking and muscle strain or other injuries.
- Patients (or his or her legal guardian) may withdraw consent at any time during the course of ECT treatment.
Psychosocial Interventions for Medical Issues
For a person afflicted with a serious medical condition, illness can trigger emotional or psychological issues. This program is designed to support individuals with a variety of medical concerns, such as cancer, renal problems, diabetes, heart disease, chronic pain and surgical issues. On the days an individual attends the program, he or she will attend three group sessions, or a longer day with six therapy groups if needed. Families are included in the treatment.
In addition to generally psychiatric and co-occurring treatment programs, specialty tracks are also offered as Outpatient Services. These specialty tracks include education and treatment focused on the specific needs of individuals who suffer from:
- Bipolar Disorder
- Dual Diagnosis (co-occurring psychiatric and chemical dependency)
- Postpartum Depression (New Mothers with Maternal Depression Program)
Patients may be admitted to the program after a brief face-to-face assessment interview if they experience symptoms that interfere with major obligations but do not require 24-hour care. These symptoms include intense mood swings, decreased concentration, increased stress or anxiety and other psychiatric issues. Other basic requirements for the program include:
- Diagnosis with a major mental illness and the patient is willing to participate in active treatment
- 18 years of age or older
- Medically able to participate in treatment
- Willingness to be admitted voluntarily by an attending psychiatrist
Patients who may require restraints or seclusion, or who are non-compliant with treatment, are not appropriate for the partial program.
Dedicated to ongoing support for patients in need of psychiatric treatment, St. Joseph Hospital offers an Aftercare Support Group led by a licensed social worker. In each session, patients meet with others who are adjusting to life with a psychiatric diagnosis and explore new coping strategies for current life transitions. Topics discussed in the group include:
- Public perceptions of mental illness
- Career issues
- Bipolar management
- Finding value, meaning and purpose
- Coping with toxic people
- Personal growth
- Life balance