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UPMC’s Child and Adolescent Bipolar Services (CABS) Program Receives National Honor for Integration Efforts

PITTSBURGH, April 9th, 2013 – The Child and Adolescent Bipolar Services (CABS) program, part of Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic of UPMC, has received a first prize National Council for Community Behavioral Healthcare 2013 Reintegration Award in Clinical Medicine.  The award, which will be announced tonight at the National Council Conference in Las Vegas, recognizes CABS’ combination of effective and innovative treatment approaches that promote recovery of children and adolescents with bipolar disorder, and their successful integration of outpatient and inpatient child and adolescent psychiatric services.
 
Each year, the National Council’s Awards of Excellence honor individuals and organizations that are making large strides in fighting mental illness and addiction. Specifically, the awards celebrate the achievements of individuals who dedicate themselves to improving the lives of those with serious mental illnesses, and the accomplishments and efforts of those living with schizophrenia or bipolar disorder in improving their own lives and the lives of their peers.
 
“We are honored to receive this prestigious award and grateful for the attention on children and adolescents with bipolar disorder,” said Rasim Somer Diler, M.D., assistant professor of psychiatry at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine and medical director of Inpatient Child & Adolescent Bipolar Services.  “One of CABS’ primary goals is to decrease the burden of mental illness by using proven treatment, interventions and support to promote recovery.”
 
The CABS program was established 15 years ago and has since served over 1,400 individuals.  CABS is a successful replicable model of an integrated evidence-based care of youth with bipolar disorder and other serious mood problems. Three years ago, CABS opened the nation’s first inpatient facility for diagnosing and treating bipolar disorder in children, aiming to bridge inpatient with CABS outpatient services. The CABS program offers consumer-oriented, family-focused care and services that are developmentally appropriate and culturally sensitive. The program’s assessment and intervention approaches and wellness initiatives are designed to reduce the burden of mental illness, improve recovery, and maximize resilience, cognitive-emotional development, and psychosocial functioning in youth. 
 
Additionally, CABS provides education to students, clinicians and consumers, and invests in research to learn more about bipolar disorder.  Clinical experience informs research ideas, research in turn develops novel treatments and ways to diagnose and follow the symptoms of mental illness, and teaching disseminates the research findings and clinical experience while also providing feedback from trainees and others in the field.
 
Moreover, youth and families actively participate in preparation of the treatment plan and frequently exchange ideas about assessments and interventions.
 
“We focus on youth and family as a whole, rather than just an illness,” added Dr. Diler.  “The CABS treatment team works with clients and families to provide ongoing individualized support to encourage treatment adherence and wellness approaches that enhance resilience and decrease the risk of recurrence.”
 
In addition to recognizing the compassionate care and educational services provided by the CABS faculty and staff, the Reintegration Award also provides a cash prize that will be donated to a nonprofit organization chosen by the winner. 
 
The Reintegration Award is the latest in a series of awards bestowed on the CABS program, in light of its outstanding integrated inpatient and outpatient services, including the Best Patient Care Award in 2011 from the Hospital Association of Pennsylvania.
 
Visit the website to learn more about the CABS program.

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