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Partial hospitalization programs are time limited, medically supervised programs that offer comprehensive, therapeutically intensive, coordinated, and structured clinical services. Partial hospitalization programs are available at least five days per week but may also offer half-day, weekend, or evening hours. Partial hospitalization programs may be freestanding or part of a broader system but should be identifiable as a distinct program or service line.
A partial hospitalization program consists of a series of structured, face-to-face therapeutic sessions organized at various levels of intensity and frequency. Partial hospitalization programs are typically designed for persons who are experiencing increased symptomatology, disturbances in behavior, or other conditions that negatively impact the mental or behavioral health of the person served. The program must be able to address the presenting problems in a setting that is not residential or inpatient. Given this, the persons served in partial hospitalization do not pose an immediate risk to themselves or others. Services are provided for the purpose of diagnostic evaluation; active treatment of a person’s condition; or to prevent relapse, hospitalization, or incarceration. Such a program functions as an alternative to inpatient care, as transitional care following an inpatient stay in lieu of continued hospitalization, as a step-down service, or when the severity of symptoms is such that success in a less acute level of care is tenuous.
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