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Family Orientation

What to Expect

The inpatient unit provides intensive hospitalization for children 7-17 years old and is the highest level of mental health care available at Children’s Hospital New Orleans. The unit has 39 beds and offers psychiatric medical services and intensive therapy for children and family. Our goal for the inpatient unit is to provide crisis stabilization, family-centered care, and coordination of ongoing behavioral health services to meet the need of the child and family.

Upon admission

Once admitted to the unit, the patient will undergo a safety examination, medical history and physical, and full psychiatric evaluation completed by a board-certified child and adolescent psychiatrist. Each patient will then be assigned a social worker who will work with the caregiver to collect information, meet regularly with the patient, and coordinate aftercare services.

Caregiver visitation

All patients receive daily scheduled phone time, during which they may make or receive calls. Caregivers may call and speak to a nurse regarding the condition of the child 24 hours per day, 7 days per Week. Daily in-person visitation is also available to each child.

During the stay

Throughout the inpatient stay, the patient and caregiver(s) will work with a multidisciplinary team comprised of physicians, social works, therapists, nurses, and mental health technicians. Each patient will engage in 3-4 expressive therapies, receive dedicated time with their social worker, and have outdoor recreational time each day. Daily programming also includes symptom management groups and individual psychotherapy. The unit is a group environment where active participation in treatment is highly encouraged.

Upon discharge

Discharge planning will begin prior to the date that the patient is discharged from the unit. Each child’s designated social worker, in conjunction with the caregiver(s), will develop a discharge plan and coordinate care with outside providers and agencies. Our team can help connect families with outside therapies, school and home-based interventions, and other community care teams to improve continuity of care after discharge.