Residential Treatment Program
A major purpose of the residential experience at Good Shepherd Services is to provide a therapeutic setting where the adolescent has the time and opportunity to grow. Each child is assigned to one of the seven group residences and each residence has a multidisciplinary team consisting of a psychiatrist, clinical milieu manager, residential coordinator and aides, teacher, therapist and nurse. The teams work with residents, their families and the referring agencies to plan, integrate and implement treatments and to review progress in the achievement of treatment plans goals.
Each residence has private bedrooms for each child, a living area, dinette and launderette. Students are allowed to decorate their own bedrooms, within guidelines, to their own taste. As part of a daily structured routine, residents are responsible for cleaning both their bedroom and an additional area of the unit. This encourages positive staff interactions and gives each child the opportunity to contribute to their residence in a responsible manner. The children in each residence are encouraged to help each other. There are regular group meetings in which team members participate. Peer and staff interactions help make the group living experience growth-enhancing so therapeutic concepts can become self-actualized and ultimately transferred into the home and community.
Each student is seen for psychiatric evaluation upon admission to Good Shepherd Services. The psychiatrist provides consultation to staff, families and referring agencies. The staff psychiatrist provides services to residents as needed and is accessible 24 hours a day for consultation.
Psychological services, including psychological and educational testing as well as consultation, are available to students upon the request of treatment teams whenever the need is determined for clarification or for treatment planning.
Clinical services are an integral part of treatment at Good Shepherd Services for all residents and their families. The Masters level therapists work to ensure specialized milieu therapy is provided for the residents assigned to their units including individual, group and family therapy sessions. They also ensure that therapeutic interventions are individualized to meet the needs of students and their families. Therapy sessions are designed to promote, enhance and restore effective levels of functioning so that each resident’s ability to successfully re-enter the community is optimized.
All therapists at Good Shepherd Services are trained in a Trauma Informed Model of Care, which incorporates elements from Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) to better treat our population. We strive to deepen our Trauma Informed Model of Care by increasingly providing Yoga and Body Movement Therapy as well as “brain based” interventions that rely upon best practices identified in research about trauma treatment.
Adjunctive therapies, such as Pet Therapy, Equine Therapy and Creative Expression Therapy are offered to residents when clinically indicated by their treatment needs. Both open-ended therapy groups and issue-focused group therapies are provided based on the needs of the population. Good Shepherd Services’ therapists ensure that each resident’s treatment progress is reviewed on a regular basis by the treatment team, the resident, the family and the referring agency worker. The therapist acts as a liaison between GSS and the community.
General medical services are provided for all residents at Good Shepherd Services. Good health and nutritional habits are stressed. A nutrition screening is performed by the nurse upon admission. Our dietitian meets with the students as warranted by this screening in order to ensure that their dietary/health needs are met. The medical, nursing, and dietary staffs at Good Shepherd are invested in providing a balanced diet that maintains and supports health.
Nurses are assigned to a residential unit team to provide more focused nursing care during the student’s length of stay. These nurses attend the treatment team meetings and center their attention on the health issues of those students on their team. The board certified pediatrician is on 24 hour call. A Registered nurse is on duty at GSS around-the-clock.