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The Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Section offer outpatient consultation, evaluation, testing and treatment for children and adolescents with problems related to behavior, feelings, emotions, thinking and learning. The approach involves teams of social workers, psychologists and psychiatrists, in close collaboration with educational specialists, primary care pediatricians and pediatric specialists.
Services begin with a comprehensive diagnostic assessment initiated with a social worker, psychologist or child and adolescent psychiatrist, depending on the preferences of the family and the referring physician. Consultations with other members of the team are obtained as needed, followed by a post-diagnostic conference with parents.
When indicated, outpatient treatment is provided. Treatments can include individual psychotherapy, parent guidance, family therapy, group therapy and medication. The selection or combination of these options is tailored to the individual needs of the individual child and family.
In addition to services at Ochsner Medical Center, child and adolescent psychiatric social workers are available at the health centers in Hammond, Mandeville and Slidell.
Children and adolescents hospitalized for medical reasons at Ochsner Medical Center may also receive urgent or planned psychiatric consultation. Indications for consultation include suicidal behavior, delirium or disruptive behavior interfering with medical treatment, coping with major or chronic medical illnesses (including transplantation, cardiac surgery and cancer) and complex diagnostic problems such as conversion syndromes. When needed, inpatient hospitalization and transitional partial hospital programs are arranged through affiliation with the DePaul-Tulane Hospital in uptown New Orleans.
The Ochsner Behavioral Medicine Unit is designed specifically for the individual who is able to function, but whose life has become so difficult that a treatment in a structural environment is necessary. The program operates on the conviction that individuals are able to change and learn the skills needed to succeed in making those changes. Treatment for stress-related emotional and physical problems is available on an outpatient day program basis, depending upon the needs of the patient.