What’s the difference between the rules of the unit of a general mental health hospital unit and a specialty mental health hospital

Teela

New Here
Hi. I was wondering what the difference was between a regular mental health hospital unit and a specialty mental health hospital unit? Like for example Sentra rockingham memorial hospital in VA vs Trauma unit at Sheppard Pratt or River oaks.

At rockingham - you can bring like 3 or 4 changes of clothes and books and colored pencils (the only hospital I’ve been to in my area that likes colored pencils…. No MP3 player. They treat most things but don’t really keep you long…. They are average strict.. they do not budge much on food though. 1 snack at pm only. Not many choices on food. Nice staff. Good groups.

I’ve Heard Sheppard pratt treats PTSD/DID (I have both). I was thinking about applying to here, It is closest to my house, I live in West Virginia. but have heard from my therapist that they currently have a 8 week wait list. I went to their website and read some

But I was wondering if anyone has been to Sheppard pratt in 2020 or 2021? And what their experience was like. How the unit is run. what a typical day is like?

how does their program differ from a regular hospital program?

I would greatly appreciate any and all help with this important matter. I have been having SI and self harming behavior recently. I am worried. I don’t want to end up like my Sister who took her life. I need help and am trying to find the right hospital and get information on it.

I know I could go to a general hospital, but all they seem to do is keep me safe, which is important, but it is not addressing why I keep having to be readmitted. Which is the physical abuse I suffered as a child and adult and not over my sisters suicide. Also at this point in time I am working hard to stay busy to keep the SI out of my mind the best I can.

Thanks for your time in reading my post.
 

Sideways

Moderator
they currently have a 8 week wait list.
I get myself on waiting lists whenever there's a question mark.

There is no harm done in taking yourself off a waiting list if you come up with something else in the meantime.

There also is nothing stopping you from forging ahead looking at other treatment options (like I think the US has IOP options as an example?) or additional types of support while you're on a waiting list.

So, you can use that 8 weeks really productively, and decide at the end of it if this is right for you. The alternative is to wait and see, possibly decide it is something you want to do, and only then go on the waiting list.
 

FauxLiz

Sponsor
@Teela I haven't been to Sheppard Pratt but I have been to River Oaks and a general hospital. In my experience (2018) the differences between the two are substantial. In the general hospital, I had maybe one session a week with a therapist and one or less a week with a psychiatrist for med management but most of that was just handled by telling the nursing staff and then the next thing you knew at med time your meds had changed. Otherwise there was one group a day and the rest of the time you were on your own. In my opinion it was destabilizing and I did everything I could to get out as soon as I could. At River Oaks, I had individual therapy once a day 5 days a week. Met with the psychiatrist at least once a week more if needed to adjust meds. Groups met from 9 am to roughly 4 pm, different groups, and depending upon your needs/diagnosis you may be required to attend all or some of them. Some group topics met every day, others 2-3 times a week. Saturdays and Sundays there were groups in the mornings. There was very little unstructured time at River Oaks, you were not permitted to stay in your room during the day, if not in a group or individual session you had to be in the common area and they had a lot of things to keep you busy (books, coloring books, games, cards, movies - regular television was not permitted, outside time in the courtyard and even computer access for a limited time once you had reached a point that your treatment team believed you could handle it). In the general hospital, there was no accountability for attending groups, you could hide out in your room all day even eating meals there which for me was not good as I was able to find ways to self-harm using the limited items in my hospital room.

Again, this has been three years since I had admissions to both RO and a general psych ward but I have sworn to my current treatment team that the only way I will ever step foot on another general psych ward will be through involuntary committment and don't expect me to survive it if that happens.
 

joeylittle

Administrator
I would greatly appreciate any and all help with this important matter. I have been having SI and self harming behavior recently. I am worried. I don’t want to end up like my Sister who took her life. I need help and am trying to find the right hospital and get information on it.
Have you spoken with your therapist about your self-harming and suicidal ideation?

Many inpatient trauma treatment centers will not admit anyone who is actively suicidal; they will want you to stabilize first, which may involve work you can do in therapy, or may also require medication.

@Sideways asked, and I'm also wondering - Has your therapist talked with you about PHP or IOP programs in your area, and the possibility of doing that along with trauma therapy?
 
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