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Specialized training for optimal outcomes

The University of Kansas Health System – Marillac Campus is staffed with child and adolescent psychiatrists who are certified by, or eligible for certification by, the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology. This achievement requires an additional 2 years of advanced training beyond general psychiatry with children, adolescents and families. Our child and adolescent psychiatrists provide complete medical/psychiatric evaluations and are able to treat a broad range of emotional and behavioral problems and psychiatric disorders.

Specialized psychiatric care helps youth

Under the best of circumstances, successfully raising a happy, healthy, productive child may be one of life's greatest challenges. When the emergence of psychiatric conditions – from depression to bipolar disorder to anxiety to psychosis – further complicates child-rearing responsibilities, parents naturally experience added difficulties, pain and fear.

Improving access to behavioral health

In 2015, The University of Kansas Health System expanded its child psychiatry inpatient services to The University of Kansas Health System – Marillac Campus. The 52-bed facility in Overland Park, Kansas, offers 24/7 inpatient care for children and adolescents ages 4-18 experiencing crises that could result in harm to themselves or others. A multidisciplinary care team of psychiatrists, psychiatric nurses, pharmacists, specialized therapists and social workers provides a safe, supportive environment to help patients overcome psychiatric challenges and safely return to their homes, families and communities.

The University of Kansas Health System – Marillac Campus is an acute-care hospital providing the highest intensity level of psychiatric care. Our treatments are designed to stabilize patients in need of urgent life interventions and promote mental health and wellness. Patients are monitored 24 hours a day, have access to a complete range of behavioral healthcare services and receive daily attention from board-certified or board-eligible child and adolescent psychiatrists who have completed an additional 2 years of specialized training. The hospital also serves as a teaching site for fellows, residents, third- and fourth-year medical students on rotation and nursing students.

Admissions and treatment

Approximately 2,200 children and adolescents were admitted to The University of Kansas Health System – Marillac Campus over the last 12 months. Patients can be admitted 24 hours a day, seven days a week. They can be transferred from an emergency room, referred by a pediatrician or brought in by their families for evaluation directly to the admissions office.

Upon admission, a patient is evaluated by a board-certified or board-eligible child and adolescent psychiatrist, a pediatrician, nursing staff and therapy staff. Lab work, psychological testing and specific therapeutic interventions are then tailored to the needs of each patient.

Comprehensive treatment is available and may include:

  • Daily individual therapy tailored to address the acute issues that led to admission
  • Family therapy, with the first session occurring within 24 hours of admission
  • Daily expressive therapy, including art, music and drama to support patients in exploring, understanding and communicating thoughts and feelings through creative outlets
  • Psychological testing as needed on a case-by-case basis
  • Pediatric treatment to support any ongoing medical concerns contributing to the patient's condition
  • Psychiatric treatment to clarify the primary diagnosis and begin to modify psychiatric medication as appropriate
  • Milieu services – in which inpatients are prescribed an assortment of activities and social interactions that build interpersonal skills and confidence – provided in a calm, sanctuary-style environment
  • Discharge planning, which occurs following a 3-5 day stay (on average)

Ensuring safety and successful recovery

Throughout all services, our goal is to keep patients safe – both from themselves and from others. We are committed to encouraging stabilization and positive change without the use of physical and chemical restraints and to facilitating reintegration into the family and community as quickly and effectively as possible.

Additional services available

In addition to inpatient care, a psychiatric residential treatment facility (PRTF) and outpatient services are also located on the same campus and administered by Cornerstones of Care. The residential facility provides non-acute, inpatient care to kids ages 12-18 who have not responded to community-based or short-term hospitalization. The program is staffed by child and adolescent psychiatrists from The University of Kansas Health System – Marillac Campus.

When to refer

If you have concerns about a patient's mental health and have attempted to support the patient and family, yet feel your best efforts have not yielded improvement, your patient may benefit from referral. Our psychiatric specialists are equipped to evaluate, stabilize and treat patients so they can return to their communities and live safely, securely and constructively.

Any patient can be assessed for admission, and we welcome outside referrals. Any children or adolescents who may be a danger to themselves or others due to psychiatric reasons should be assessed. For admissions to The University of Kansas Health System – Marillac Campus, call 913-951-4400.

Article reviewed by Mitchell Douglass, MD

Dr. Mitchell Douglass is a board-certified child and adolescent psychiatrist at The University of Kansas Health System and serves as assistant professor at the University of Kansas Medical Center. He is medical director of Child Psychiatry Inpatient Services at The University of Kansas Health System – Marillac Campus.

Consult with a physician online. Or call 913-588-5862 or 877-588-5862.