The Menninger Clinic is a not-for-profit inpatient psychiatric treatment center serving adolescents and adults with a broad range of psychiatric and substance abuse problems. The Menninger Clinic offers five specialty inpatient programs and diagnostic services, including the Adolescent Treatment Program (ATP), Compass Young Adult Program, Comprehensive Psychiatric Assessment and Stabilization, HOPE Adult Program, and Professionals in Crisis Program. Treatment follows an integrated, biopsychosocial model in which pharmacological, psychotherapeutic and systems approaches are employed to assist patients in understanding and managing their symptoms. Much attention is given to careful and thorough diagnosis and a compassionate, client-centered approach to patient care.
All work at The Menninger Clinic is done with sub-acute inpatients. The core training experiences on this track are divided between six-month rotations on the Hope Program for adults with chronic mental health histories and the Compass Program for Young Adults. In both programs, the intern integrates diagnostic formulations into treatment planning, meets with patients during weekly rounds, helps to co-lead therapy groups, and provides individual evaluation and therapy services within a multidisciplinary treatment team. The Hope Program serves adults (ages 18+) with complex psychiatric issues that have hindered their capacity to meet important vocational, personal and interpersonal goals. The average length of stay on the Hope Unit is six to eight weeks. The Compass unit serves a population of young adults, ages 18-30 who are having problems managing the transition to adulthood. This program also lasts on average six to eight weeks.
Assessment and Consultation
Psychological testing is a valued clinical activity that often contributes to our understanding of patients and is an important aspect of each intern's training. As mentioned above, the intern is centrally involved in diagnostic formulation, which is informed by testing, team input, previous records, and intensive interviewing. For each six-month rotation, the intern will carry a caseload of two to three assessment cases at a time. The intern will share the assessment results with patients, families, and the treatment teams. Psychological testing batteries can include objective personality tests (MMPI-2, MCMI), projective personality tests (Rorschach, TAT), and neuropsychological screenings (RBANS). As indicated, the intern may also assess intelligence (WAIS-IV). Additionally, interns will learn more about using a collaborative assessment approach, a therapeutic way to approach psychological testing, that involves the patient and examiner being co-investigators throughout the assessment process. Experience with test administration, interpretation, and integrated report-writing is essential.
The intern conducts group and individual therapy for patients on their respective units. The intern will conduct four to eight hours per week of individual and group therapy for each program. Patient treatment plans include many evidence-based psycho-educational, skills and process groups including cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), suicide resilience, trauma education, dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT), self-compassion, and acceptance and commitment therapy.
Access to Diverse Populations
Interns in this track gain experience with a broad array of complex psychiatric disorders or co-occurring disorders across adulthood. Common presenting problems including mood disorders, anxiety disorders, PTSD, substance abuse, and borderline personality disorder. While the majority of patients come from the United States, The Menninger Clinic receives a fair number of patients who come from other countries. The Compass Program serves a significant number of patients who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, and/or transgendered, as well as patients who may be questioning, unsure about, or in the process of exploring their sexuality.
The intern can become involved in ongoing research activities at the hospital if they choose this as a secondary research rotation. Such opportunities include program evaluation, assessment of hospital-wide outcomes, work on theoretical models including applications of mentalizing/theory of mind to treatment of inpatients with Axis II pathology, and research with suicidal patients using the Collaborative Assessment and Management of Suicidality (CAMS-David Jobes, Ph.D.).
Theoretical orientations utilized at The Menninger Clinic are integrative, broadly and flexibly psychodynamic, with cognitive behavior therapy, family systems and other skills-building and empirically supported treatment approaches represented. Interns receive at least two hours of individual supervision per week (testing and therapy supervision) by various members of the psychology faculty. Patricia Daza, Ph.D., serves as the track supervisor for the Adult Track at The Menninger Clinic.