Patient Information
Child & Adolescent
College Mental Health Program


Adolescent Acute Residential Treatment Program. For Help and Information Call 617-855-2800.

Adolescent Dual Diagnosis Residential Services

Landing at McLean® Hospital

Welcome to the Adolescent Acute Residential Treatment Program

The Adolescent Acute Residential Treatment program is a dual diagnosis residential treatment program for adolescents and young adults through age 19 who are struggling with co-occurring substance use disorder and psychiatric illness such as ADHD, anxiety, depression and bipolar disorder.

This insurance-based program focuses on stabilizing adolescents in acute crisis. The length of stay is about 10 to 14 days. Teens and young adults can be referred to the program from home or any level of care, including inpatient, partial and outpatient. We offer a full range of services, including assessment and consultation, group therapy, skills training, psychoeducation, psychopharmacology and family therapy.

Our Leadership and Staff

Our clinical management team is comprised of child and adolescent psychiatrists, clinical psychologists and clinical social workers with extensive experience in the treatment of adolescents with substance use disorders and other complex psychiatric illnesses.

  1. Jessica Feinberg, LICSW, Director of Clinical Services
  2. John Rodolico, PhD, Director of Adolescent Addictions Training, Senior Addictions Consultant
  3. Cynthia Kaplan, PhD, Associate Clinical and Administrative Director, Child and Adolescent Programs (CAP)

A multidisciplinary staff of child psychiatrists, psychologists, clinical social workers, nurses, recreational therapists, clinical educators and mental health specialists are trained and experienced in a wide array of treatments, including cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), dialectical behavior therapy (DBT), motivational interviewing, contingency management, and psychopharmacology. Staff members have experience working with patients from diverse cultural and socioeconomic backgrounds.

Setting and Program Life
The Landing at McLean®Hospital

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Our residential dual diagnosis programs are located on the second floor of East House, one of several historic buildings on the McLean campus. Though McLean Hospital is located only minutes from Boston, its setting offers a pleasant, peaceful environment that enables adolescents to focus on improving their mental health.
The program facilities offer:

  1. comfortable bedrooms;
  2. common areas for groups and conversation;
  3. a fully equipped kitchen; and
  4. access to a fitness facility with state-of-the-art equipment and basketball court located on the McLean campus.

The programs operate in an unlocked setting, maximizing each individual's responsibility and capacity for self-control. Groups and structured activities involve skills training, team building, preparing meals and recreational therapy. These pursuits enhance daily living skills, build self-mastery and esteem, and provide a sense of autonomy and membership in a community.

Parents, for information on overnight accommodations in the area, please click here.


Upon admission, each adolescent meets individually with a psychiatrist and case manager for an initial assessment that includes diagnostic evaluation and treatment planning. The evaluation takes into account biological, psychological, and social strengths and vulnerabilities. The treatment plan includes plans for medications, if indicated, as well as goal setting, skills training, family interventions, and aftercare planning.

When needed, additional specialty consultations are available in neurology, eating disorders, personality disorders, Asperger's disorder, and trauma. Following any specialty consultation, the multidisciplinary clinical team develops an individualized treatment plan that includes the recommendations of consultants.

Length of Stay

The average length of stay is 10 to 14 days. If there is medical necessity, however, adolescents may remain in treatment for a longer length of time, depending upon insurance coverage.

Treatment Approach

Treatment covers the full psychiatric spectrum, including mood and thought disorders and their associated behaviors, family and school difficulties, and substance abuse. Adolescents may need intense verbal support during their stays, but are expected to maintain self-control without the need for physical management. The staff specializes in making sophisticated assessments, diagnoses and recommendations in complex situations.

Families are welcomed onto the unit and are considered a critical part of the treatment team. As a resource and partner within the community, we make extensive effort to involve community providers, including therapists, agencies and schools, in treatment and after-care planning.

Our primary goal is to help adolescents stabilize so that they may pursue further treatment in a partial or an outpatient setting. For adolescents prone to self-destructive behaviors, including self-injury and suicidal ideation, DBT and CBT are used to help them develop the coping skills to deal with emotionally overwhelming circumstances, interpersonal conflicts and self-destructive urges. Additional components of treatment include case management, classroom-based skills training, individual and family meetings, expressive music and art therapies, skills coaching, group and milieu therapy and recreational therapy. For more information, click About Our Treatment Methodologies.

Parental Involvement

Because parental involvement is critical to the success of treatment, parents are involved in treatment at each step. To enhance involvement, we communicate closely with parents throughout the course of their child's stay.

Parents participate in the initial evaluation, subsequent family meetings and discharge planning, and may attend a weekly parent support group. Parents are also allowed scheduled daily visits after 3pm and all-day weekend visits. These visits furnish opportunity for adolescents and families to practice new skills and behaviors.

Program Components
  1. Each adolescent undergoes an assessment of his/her substance use and co-occurring psychiatric illness, taking biological, psychological, and social strengths and vulnerabilities into consideration. This allows the clinical team to develop an appropriate treatment plan that meets the specific needs of that individual.
  2. Skills training modules are introduced during classroom time and are reinforced through group exercises.
  3. Each adolescent meets with a staff psychiatrist for psychopharmacologic consultation.
  4. Adolescents participate in therapeutic passes with family members on evenings and weekends.
  5. Individual time during evenings and weekends is available to complete schoolwork. School-appointed tutors may meet with the adolescents on the unit.
  6. Weekly parent support group and family meetings are available for parents.
  7. Recovery mentoring/skills coaching are available on weekdays during group hours.
  8. Adolescents work with their clinical team and families to develop relapse-prevention and crisis management plans.

Click here to view the "Typical Daily Schedule.”

Advancing Cognitive Skills

For all adolescents, cognitive skills are supported and expanded through task-oriented goal-setting groups. Students struggling with issues related to substance abuse, anger management, emotion regulation and trauma utilize specific curricula that help them work toward recovery.

Adolescents may use daily room time and time on the weekends to work on school assignments. Tutors provided by the school may come to the program to assist adolescents in completing their work. Regular contact with local educational agencies is encouraged.

Admission / Making a Referral

For admission or to make a referral to the Adolescent Acute Residential Treatment program call 617.855.2800.

Discharge and Aftercare

Substance abuse and psychiatric illness may be chronic conditions that require continued attention over time. We emphasize continued treatment to increase resilience and functioning after the acute phase is resolved. The treatment team works closely with patients and families to develop appropriate referrals and aftercare plans. Based on clinical needs and progress made during treatment, the treatment team may recommend that continued partial care treatment take place at McLean Hospital or at another program. If a longer term therapeutic school or residential treatment, other than at McLean, is being considered, we offer an onsite educational consultant who has toured over forty programs across the country.

For adolescents who have completed residential care and are ready to return to school and their community, the treatment team collaborates with adolescents, parents, schools, outpatient treatment programs, and community agencies to foster a smooth transition back to home.

Payment and Insurance

Adolescent Acute Residential Treatment (ART) program accepts Medicare, Massachusetts Medicaid and many private insurance and managed care plans.

Families and others interested in our programs should contact their insurance carrier, employer or McLean patient accounts at 617.855.3311.

About McLean Hospital

U.S. News & World Report named McLean America's #1 Hospital for Psychiatry in 2013 . McLean Hospital is the largest psychiatric facility of Harvard Medical School, an affiliate of the Massachusetts General Hospital and a member of Partners HealthCare. For more information about McLean visit us on McLeanHospital or follow the hospital on Twitter@McLeanHospital.

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