UT Harris County Psychiatric Center

Child and Adolescent Services

adolescent boy staring defiantly at the camera in a school hallway with lockers and other teens in the background

Services are offered for children, ages three through twelve and adolescents, ages thirteen through seventeen. The average length of stay for children and adolescents is eleven days. The goal of the treatment program is to help the child or adolescent better understand his or her illness, the possible need for medication, and how to better cope with life-issues that may threaten their mental health. Group and individual therapy are designed to teach the patients how to resolve interpersonal and family conflicts, stabilize psychiatric conditions and identify specialized educational and living needs. The supportive unit environment can help children develop a more positive self-image, learn insight into feelings and conflict and develop more adaptive styles of behavior. Patients are encouraged to express feelings, accept responsibility and accept the consequences of personal behavior as part of the treatment plan.

Children and adolescents treated by UTHCPC suffer from any of the following disorders:

  • Bipolar or manic depression
  • Schizophrenia
  • Depression or major depression
  • Anxiety disorders
  • Disruptive behavior disorders
  • Attention deficit/hyperactivity

Many children participating in the UTHCPC program also have secondary illnesses, including those related to:

  • Substance abuse
  • Behavioral adjustment
  • Sexual abuse
  • Physical abuse
  • Life-threatening situations
  • Suicide attempts
  • Family relationship issues
  • School difficulties

The UTHCPC Child and Adolescent Program allows the treatment team to focus on the stabilization of those in all levels of crisis, within a safe, secure, structured, small group milieu.

Evaluation services may include, when warranted:

  • Psychiatric evaluations
  • Physical examinations
  • Blood tests and EEGs
  • Activity therapy evaluations
  • Learning disabilities evaluations
  • Psychological
  • Neuropsychological testing
  • Pharmacological reviews
  • Substance abuse evaluations
  • Neurological consultations
  • Psychosocial assessments
  • Family assessments
  • Structured diagnostic interviews

Inpatient program features on the Child and Adolescent Services include:

  • Board certified child/adolescent psychiatrist-directed treatment
  • Multi-disciplinary team approach, including psychiatrists, nurses, psychologists, social workers, chaplains, dieticians, therapists, teachers and aides
  • Continuum of care providing inpatient care and out-patient referral
  • Individualized treatment plans
  • Individual and group therapy
  • 24-hour care
  • Family participation
  • On-site Texas Education Agency accredited academic program