The Children's Institute Blog

Nurturing the Mind, Body, and Spirit

Posted: Oct 08, 2019 by The Children's Institute


Nurturing the Mind, Body, and Spirit
Helping a child to reach his or her full potential requires a dynamic process of growth and change that comes from caring for the mind, the body, and the spirit. This is the hallmark of how The Children's Institute of Pittsburgh has worked to meet its mission for more than a century.

"The Children's Institute has a rich history of providing comprehensive care to treat the whole person," explains Stacey Vaccaro, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer for The Children's Institute. "As the need for community-based health services continues to grow, we are positioning the organization to extend our reach throughout the area, offering families better access to high-quality outpatient behavioral health care we provide."


Thank you note from child that says "thank you for teaching me ways to manage my pain. I will miss our walks and time together. We love you and will miss you."Through its Behavioral Health program, The Children's Institute offers a professional team of licensed behavioral health clinicians who provide comprehensive support and work with the whole family on an outpatient basis to provide the best plan of care. From individual therapy to group therapy, services are available as an amazing resource to children, teens, and young adults, including those with medical complexities. Clinicians providing individual therapy address concerns related to depression, anxiety, social and behavioral issues, inattention and impulsivity, separation and loss, and trauma.

Outpatient behavioral health services are currently offered at the main campus in Squirrel Hill, with plans to soon expand into local communities. Through the strategic goals outlined in Vision 2023, the program will also consider partnerships with other organizations that have complementary behavioral health services to help The Children's Institute extend its reach even further.

"The Behavioral Health program at The Children's Institute is growing to serve a more diverse group of children and youth," says Amy Devinney, Director of Behavioral Health at The Children's Institute.

"Our doors will be open to all, from ages 5 to 21, who are struggling to deal with challenging behaviors, emotions, and social interactions."

Our Behavioral Health team includes board-certified child psychiatrists, certified registered nurse practitioners, psychologists, and licensed behavioral health therapists. They provide a comprehensive, holistic, and collaborative model of health care delivery built on the child's diagnosis and the family's needs. Individual, family, and group therapists are founded on evidence-based practices aimed to help achieve necessary goals. The approach is strength-based; clinicians identify a family's strengths and work to maximize them. Medication management is also a component of the program.

"Today, studies show that about 20 percent of school-age children are in need of behavioral health interventions," Amy says. "The earlier we can intervene and provide treatment, the better each child is positioned for success at home and in school. The Children's Institute has the foundation to address this immediate need while ensuring we are on the right path to provide essential care far into the future."

"With the development of new services and the planned onboarding of a number of new therapists, we project our capacity to provide behavioral health care to double in the next year," Stacey concludes. "The Children's Institute now has the opportunity to live out our mission from a different position that will enable us to impact more children, youth, and families."

If your family or someone you know needs help, we are here for you. Contact us at 412-420-2362 to schedule an appointment. If you are experiencing a clinical emergency or crisis situation, please call 9-1-1 or visit the closest emergency room.


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