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What to Know About a Partial Hospitalization Program

therapist explaining to female patient what to know about a a partial hospitalization program

The behavioral health industry offers numerous treatment programs, broadly divided into inpatient or residential and outpatient treatment. Residential treatment requires the patient to live on-site at a treatment center or other dedicated facility. Outpatient treatment grants greater flexibility, allowing patients to return home at night to sleep in their own beds and attend to work, school, or family obligations. However, outpatient treatment levels vary in intensity, accountability, and time commitment, including a partial hospitalization program (PHP). It is only natural to wonder how a partial hospitalization program works and what separates it from other forms of outpatient treatment.

Connections Wellness Group offers mental health treatment services in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, including a partial hospitalization program. Call 940.360.4245 today for more information.

What to Know About a PHP for Mental Health

A partial hospitalization program is one of the most comprehensive and intensive outpatient mental health treatment levels. It’s a program that provides significant structure and treatment to patients while providing flexibility within their day-to-day lives. It’s differentiated from other outpatient treatment programs, such as an intensive outpatient program (IOP) or a traditional outpatient program (OP). Each level of outpatient treatment offers varying degrees of structure, accountability, and required hours of treatment and education.

The partial hospitalization program is typically a 4-6 hour program, often during the day, where those with significant or severe mental health symptoms can seek treatment from the care of doctors, nurses, and therapists.

It is a middle-ground in treatment for mental illness, between the 24-hour supervision of an Inpatient Program and a little more than the 3-4 hours required within an Intensive Outpatient Program. Like the others, there is a significant benefit to being part of PHP, with the three main benefits being:

  1. Structure
  2. Treatment
  3. Socialization

How a PHP Works


Mental health patients benefit from structure, especially when there are significant or severe symptoms. PHP allows for structure within the day and provides greater flexibility to attend to other obligations such as work, school, or family.

In a typical PHP program, patients will undergo individual psychotherapy/counseling sessions, group therapy, and educational activities. This is all done under the supervision of doctors, nurses, and therapists.

Patients within the partial hospitalization program are typically required to be at the program early in the morning, sometimes as early as 8:00 or 8:30 AM. Breakfast is then sometimes served, and patients start their first class. The classes can be therapeutic or educational, and each class runs roughly around the same time, creating a structure and a rhythm to patients’ daily lives. The only disruptions would be if the patient is receiving medication management, and even that is regularly scheduled.

With a typical partial hospitalization program lasting at least five days, the structure the program creates can alleviate symptoms with the help of the treatment methods (which are the second main benefit of PHP). Many types of treatment are available in PHP, varying according to the mental health or treatment facility.


Many partial hospitalization programs offer a variety of classes, focusing on two areas: Group Therapy and Education.

Group therapy can have significant benefits in a partial hospitalization program:

  • Patients are exposed to their peers, which can lead to a trusting and supportive environment.
  • They have the opportunity to share their personal issues. Talk therapy often helps, and the support and input of peers can be invaluable.

Education classes are focused on telling patients about their illnesses. This may include statistics about drug and alcohol use disorders, tips on managing depression, thoughts about trauma, and notes on different kinds of therapy that might be helpful when they leave the program. Education classes underscore the importance of adhering to medication.

Additionally, medication management is offered within the PHP program, as patients are monitored carefully for increased symptoms and the need for adjustments. Medication is often crucial in alleviating symptoms, although it may take several weeks to take full effect.


The third main benefit of the partial hospitalization program is socialization. Often, those seeking treatment for mental health symptoms from an institution have struggled to maintain relationships during their day-to-day lives. For people suffering from depression or anxiety, socialization within a PHP program can lead to reduced symptoms, less loneliness, and relationships that continue outside the treatment facility.

Without socialization and connections, it’s easier to feel depressed. Our body even takes note as our immune system begins to suffer without socialization. Socialization can also create resilience to other situations, allowing a patient in PHP to build their confidence and develop relationships after they have left the program. There is the aspect of socialization in group therapy as well, which creates a community of support.

With treatments varying according to the facility and the needs of their patients, a patient needs to do their research before being admitted. A patient finding what they want is critical for reducing symptoms as it allows them to be proactive and participate in the treatment process.

Connections Wellness Group Offers a Partial Hospitalization Program for Mental Health – Call Today!

The partial hospitalization program provides innumerable benefits for patients struggling with mental health issues. It provides structure, treatment, and socialization to encourage the patients to manage their care and reduce symptoms overall. It is helpful for many, from those with a mood disorder, thinking disorder, or alcohol or substance use disorder.

Connections Wellness Group has several locations in the Dallas-Forth Worth area, so do not hesitate to call us at 940.360.4245 or contact us online for more information.