HCN News & Notes

Austen Riggs Center Launches New Assessment Program

STOCKBRIDGE — The Austen Riggs Center announced it has started a new assessment program for adults who are looking to clarify the nature of their struggles and to identify appropriate treatment resources.

The Intensive Dynamic Assessment, or IDA, is a comprehensive, personalized, two- to three-day assessment designed to help people achieve a focused understanding of the problems they are facing. This service is suitable for both people considering treatment for the first time and those who are in a treatment that is no longer progressing.

“This new assessment reflects a natural evolution and growth in the services Riggs offers, and is a direct result of our Clinical Systems Strategic Initiative that aims to build upon the clinical excellence Riggs has long been known for,” said Medical Director and CEO Dr. Andrew Gerber.

The IDA consists of interviews with the patient; interviews with the patient’s family members and significant others;  psychological testing and, when appropriate, neuropsychological screening; medication consultation; verbal feedback (a written report is sent within two weeks); and assistance with referrals. 

“Riggs brings a particular expertise to the field of psychiatric assessment,” said Dr. Spencer Biel, associate director of the Therapeutic Community Program, who is leading this service. “Drawing on our long-standing tradition of providing residential treatment, our approach to assessment is deeply rooted in efforts to move beyond diagnostic labels in order to understand how people’s difficulties represent their best efforts to manage painful, challenging circumstances. We carefully consider the contexts, historical and current, informing a person’s problems, and through this perspective address each individual personally and meaningfully.”

More information, including cost and how to inquire about the assessment program, can be found online at www.austenriggs.org/intensive-dynamic-assessment or by calling (844) 868-4988.

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