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Community Psychiatric Supportive Treatment

Community Psychiatric Supportive Treatment (CPST) helps emotionally troubled youth and their families. The program is specifically designed to help families meet the challenges associated with a young person's emotional and behavioral difficulties.

CPST is effective in helping youth with chronic, serious emotional problems or behaviors including:

  • Severe depression and anxiety
  • Frequent and severe outbursts
  • Destruction of property
  • Aggression toward others
  • Behaviors resulting in school exclusions
  • Thoughts or acts of self injury or harming others

Treatment should also be considered for youth who have had multiple, psychiatric hospitalizations and when less intensive interventions have been unsuccessful.

How the Program Works

A team of professionals provides intensive treatment and case management services to help families discover and use personal strengths as well as other sources of support such as relatives, friends and community resources. Treatment is provided in the home, as well as in school, neighborhood and community settings.

Treatment focuses on helping parents build supportive social networks and empowering them to address their child's needs more effectively. The program emphasizes long-term change that families can maintain following treatment. Parents also learn skills that allow for effective parenting after treatment is ended. The intended result is that the young person will successfully remain in his or her own home, school and community.

Team members, who are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, include a clinical supervisor and a CPST specialist trained in family systems and wrap-around concepts. The family is always considered part of the team. Other participants on the team include various family supports such as relatives, friends and professionals involved with the family. Because interventions are intensive, families receive weekly contact (at a minimum).

The program emphasizes long-term change that families can maintain following treatment. Any combination of services may be provided to the youth and family including:

  • Family interventions
  • Individual sessions with youth
  • Individual sessions with parents
  • Assistance with management of crises
  • Consultation with schools
  • Coordination of activities with school systems, juvenile court and other social service agencies
  • Arrangement of comprehensive assessment services including psychiatric and psychological evaluations
  • Facilitation of individually tailored care