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What Is Partial Hospitalization Program?

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By: Renaissance Recovery

Medically Reviewed by: Diana Vo, LMFT

Last Updated: 7/1/2021

Authored By: Joe Gilmore

Table of Contents

A partial hospitalization program is also known as PHP or a day program.

PHPs provide the most intensive level of outpatient treatment for those in a substance abuse treatment program, sitting below residential rehab on the continuum of care, but above the less intensive IOPs (intensive outpatient programs) and regular outpatient programs. IOPs and standard outpatient programs are part-time, while a partial hospitalization program is full-time. 

With a partial hospitalization program, you can obtain intensive and highly structured treatment without the cost, commitment, or restrictions of inpatient rehab. 

Since the enactment of the Affordable Care Act, all health insurance providers are obliged to offer coverage for outpatient treatment if you’re suffering from alcohol use disorder, substance use disorder, or a mental health disorder. PHPs fall into this category of treatment delivery.

What Happens in a Partial Hospitalization Program?

If you choose to engage with one of our partial hospitalization programs here at Renaissance Recovery, you can expect access to all of the following: 

  • Individual counseling
  • Group counseling
  • Family counseling
  • Psychotherapies like CBT and DBT
  • Holistic therapies
  • Experiential therapies
  • Medication-assisted treatment

With partial hospitalization programs, you get accountability to keep you on track with your recovery during the challenging early phase following detox and withdrawal. You’ll be free to achieve this without sacrificing your independence, though. 

All PHPs start with a detailed assessment. This enables our team of healthcare professionals to formulate a personalized treatment plan. This will include treatment of any co-occurring disorders, and it will also include aftercare. Recovery is a process not an event, and here at Renaissance we’ll help you every step of the way.

Expect to field questions about your past and present substance use, as well as a range of medical tests to establish your overall health status. 

If you have alcohol use disorder or substance use disorder, your symptoms will be diagnosed as: 

  • Mild
  • Moderate
  • Severe

Most mild and moderate addictions respond well to outpatient treatment. With many severe addictions, inpatient treatment can be the safest and most effective method of recovering, starting with a supervised medically-managed detox

Following detoxification, you’ll start engaging with therapy sessions. These sessions take place three to five times per week for at least three months. The highly structured nature of treatment helps you to step down from residential rehab more smoothly, or to more easily re-enter society and family life as you start your recovery journey with outpatient treatment. 

The core goal of a PHP is simple: to help you discover the skills you need to live substance-free and independently rather than being hamstrung by addiction or mental health issues. 

Each time you return home between your therapy sessions, you have the opportunity to put what you have been learning into practice. The more you implement healthier coping strategies, the more readily you’ll cope with life’s stressors without relapse and delaying your recovery. 

If your home environment is not conducive to recovery – if you have family members using substances, for example – you could base yourself at a sober living home for the duration of your PHP. Here, you’ll live in an alcohol-free and drug-free environment surrounded by others in recovery.

What is Partial Hospitalization Like?

Partial hospitalization programs offer the support and framework of treatment you would receive in an inpatient setting, but without the complete commitment required of packing your bags and heading to a treatment center for a month or more. 

Now, part of the addiction treatment you receive is delivered at a treatment center. This is considered the hospitalization component of treatment. After each session, you return home or to a sober living community.

What is Partial Hospitalization for Mental Health

According to data from the 2019 NSDUH (National Survey on Drug Use and Health), more than 20 million adults in the United States have a substance use disorder. 9.5 million people have a co-occurring substance use disorder and mental health condition. This is known as a dual diagnosis or co-occurring disorder. When this occurs, common mental health disorders presenting include: 

  • GAD (generalized anxiety disorder)
  • Major depressive disorder
  • PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder)
  • Bipolar disorder
  • Panic disorder
  • Schizophrenia

When a mental health disorder is not severe enough to warrant intensive residential treatment – and assuming you are in no danger of harming yourself or others – a partial hospitalization program can effectively treat the symptoms of mental health conditions, as well as any co-occurring disorders. 

A partial hospitalization program for mental health unfolds along broadly similar lines to PHPs for addiction. 

Medications are frequently prescribed to help alleviate symptoms of anxiety and depression. 

With a mental health PHP, you’ll also have access to various forms of psychotherapy, including cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and dialectical behavior therapy (DBT). These talk therapies help you cope more readily with volatile emotions.

How to Start a Partial Hospitalization Program

You’ll need to be free of alcohol or drugs before you start a partial hospitalization program. 

Once you have finished detoxing, getting started with a PHP is as simple as attending your first scheduled session at the treatment center. 

To make this happen, reach out to our admissions team to arrange for an initial assessment. As outlined above, this will form the basis of your treatment plan, and will help to ensure you get the help you need without overextending yourself financially, and without heading to residential rehab. 

If you have a co-occurring substance use disorder or alcohol use disorder, our integrated dual diagnosis treatment program will help you address both issues simultaneously. 

To get started recalibrating your mental health, contact the Renaissance admissions team to inquire about our partial hospitalization program for mental health at 866.330.9449.

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Pat C

“I owe my life and my happiness to these people. October 8th, 2019 marked two years of sobriety for me, and prior to finding Renaissance I hadn’t had 24 hours sober in nearly 20 years.”

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Paige R

“They truly cared for me and the other people that I served with! From this group, I have made 8 new brothers and friends for life! We have continued on, after the program, to take care of each other”

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Courtney S

“Great staff who took the time to get to know me. They have a lot of experience in this field and have first hand experience with what I was going through. IOP is outstanding and really built up a ton of great relationships and found this program to be a ‘breath of fresh air’.”

Diana Vo, LMFT

Diana is an addiction expert and licensed marriage and family therapist who has been in the field of mental health for over 10 years.

Joseph Gilmore

Joseph Gilmore has been in the addiction industry for three years with experience working for facilities all across the country