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Early Psychosis in Adolescents and Young Adults

The early psychosis treatment program at UC San Diego Health is designed for adolescents and young adults experiencing changes in their thoughts, behaviors or emotions that might be associated with serious mental health issues. 

We offer the highest level of expert care for adolescents and young adults with:

With our recovery-oriented, early intervention treatment plans, some individuals may recover completely from their first psychotic episode. Others can learn coping strategies for dealing with continuing or future psychotic symptoms.

Coordinated Specialty Care

Your care draws on the expertise of psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers and specialized therapists skilled in assessing and treating young people with serious mental illness. We work with families and primary care physicians, or other providers, to customize recovery-oriented treatment plans to fit each person’s specific psychiatric and functional needs. 

According to a National Institute of Mental Health initiative, our approach to care can improve outcomes for young adults with a single episode of psychosis.

Comprehensive Evaluation and Evidence-Based Treatment

At your first visit, a psychiatrist or psychologist will do a comprehensive evaluation to understand your symptoms and diagnosis. 

Our experts will then develop a personalized treatment plan that may include a combination of:

  • Medication management – to get the best treatment relief at the lowest possible dose Individual psychotherapy sessions – to learn about yourself, your condition and how to manage it and resume normal activities
  • Group psychotherapy – adolescent, adult and multi-family support, cognitive behavioral therapy, wellness, and employment and college support
  • Personalized intensive outpatient care – to address psychiatric and functional needs of people who require a higher level of care than regular clinic visits. Treatment can include individual, group and family therapy, as well as medication management.
  • Peer-support services – where people with psychosis learn from each other’s experiences and help each other thrive
  • Referrals to UC San Diego Health inpatient care (hospitalization) – for patients who need the highest level of care
  • Consultations and second opinion evaluations – to confirm a diagnosis or treatment approach with our specialists
  • Recovery and follow-up care – for continued support, monitoring and assistance with lifestyle changes for long-term wellness

In both individual and group therapy, we use a variety of approaches that empower and teach patients to manage their condition, including psychoeducation, cognitive behavioral therapy, cognitive remediation therapy, dialectical behavioral therapy, family-focused therapy, mindfulness and lifestyle counseling.

Research to Improve Care

UC San Diego Health providers conduct original research to improve treatments for mental health conditions. To learn more about our research studies and how to participate in one, please call 619-543-7816 or visit UC San Diego CARE

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Billing and Insurance

We accept cash payments as well as some insurance carriers. ​

For a list of accepted insurance companies or for more on insurance coverage, please see Behavioral Health Plans Accepted or call 619-543-7745.

Make A Donation

Help support our mission to deliver effective care to youth with mental illness by making a donation to the early psychosis treatment program.

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