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Levels of Care at the Pediatric Obsessive Compulsive Disorder Program

We provide two levels of care for children and adolescents with OCD:

  • Intensive outpatient treatment
  • Outpatient treatment for less severe OCD symptoms

Intensive Outpatient Treatment

Many children and adolescents with OCD benefit from intensive outpatient services.

The OCD Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP) at UPMC Western Psychiatric Hospital provides the following services:

  • Nine hours of group therapy sessions per week
  • Weekly visits with a psychiatrist
  • Weekly parent support group
  • Biweekly family therapy sessions
  • Individual sessions as needed

All services for children and adolescents and their families take place during program hours.

Benefits of the IOP

The OCD IOP provides children and adolescents with:

  • More intense and frequent services, compared to traditional outpatient mental health treatment
  • Less restrictive treatment compared to inpatient treatment at a residential facility or in a hospital

The treatment of choice for children and adolescents with OCD is cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) with exposure response prevention (E/RP). We provide educational information about CBT with E/RP to children and adolescents and their families throughout treatment.

The IOP treatment team

Our multidisciplinary treatment team includes:

  • Two board-certified child psychiatrists
  • A psychiatric nurse
  • A family therapist
  • Two master's-level group therapists

Because UPMC Western Psychiatric Hospital is a teaching hospital, the program usually has two or three master's- or doctorate-level students who assist the therapists during group therapy sessions.

Outpatient Treatment

For children who are suffering from less severe OCD symptoms, outpatient therapy also is available.

Outpatient treatment at the Pediatric OCD Program includes:

  • 45-minute individual therapy sessions
  • Medication evaluation and ongoing monitoring by a psychiatrist and nurse clinician