The beginning of the school year is a time filled with anticipation, excitement, and bustle. During what might be considered the busiest time of the year for professionals working with adolescents, perhaps the biggest worry is that students will encounter serious behavioral health and/or substance abuse issues as they transition back to the grind from the calm of summer. For nearly 20 years, High Focus Centers has made a commitment to those of you who must confront these issues. We will always be there to offer support – whether in the form of education and prevention, or in providing the highest quality treatment for the students in immediate need.
In 2013, High Focus has renewed its focus on listening to the community and providing truly relevant services in order to better meet the needs of those we serve.
Within our sites, many exciting changes have taken place. Our adolescent psychiatric Intensive Outpatient Programs (IOP) and Partial Programs have always been highly effective in alleviating acute symptomology and preparing students for the transition back to school. Patients will now leave even more prepared, having learned a concrete skill set for interpersonal effectiveness, distress tolerance, emotional regulation and mindfulness as we now provide every adolescent patient with daily Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) skills groups. They will go back to school with specific tools to deal with stress, conflict, and impulsivity and be in a better position to succeed than ever before.
On the substance abuse side, we have received valuable feedback from the community regarding the structure of our Adolescent IOP. We have responded by offering a stratified set of programs that can better address the needs of each student, and keep them in groups with those who have needs most similar to their own. The new structure is as follows:
P.E.A.K. Program (Promoting Education, Awareness, & Knowledge)
- Educational Program; 1 day per week for 6 weeks, 2 hours per day
R.I.S.E. Program (Risk Intervention & Substance Education)
- Intensive Outpatient Program; After school 2 days per week, 3 hours per day
P.A.T.H. Program (Providing Addiction Therapy & Hope)
- Addiction IOP; After school 3 – 4 days per week, 3.5 hours per day
P.A.T.H. Program with School Component
- Addiction IOP; 3-4 days per week Including schooling, 5.5 hours per day
When a student is referred for a comprehensive evaluation, we will determine the extent of his or her substance use and recommend a track that best suits the individual. Within all of these tracks, we administer supervised random state-of-the-art drug screens that are ahead of the curve in testing for the newest drugs of abuse. Of course, we demand that our staff takes a collaborate approach and be in constant communication with the referring school professionals.
High Focus Centers remains committed to prevention and education. We will be providing educational programming for parents and students in several school districts across New Jersey. In addition, we have partnered with many local Municipal Alliances and will be sponsoring prevention based seminars to further educate members of the community. Lastly, High Focus will be running free educational groups for any parents in the community who wish to attend. As a leader in New Jersey’s behavioral health and addiction treatment industry, High Focus takes its responsibility very seriously and vows to use its resources to help stop problems before they become irreversible.
Despite the changes we have made, the theme of service at High Focus Centers remains the same. Our highest focus is on returning students to school prepared to live a productive and fulfilling life. We are happy to have a close working relationship the many professionals in the community who work with adolescents, and ask that you continue to trust us when you feel a substance abuse or psychiatric assessment is necessary.
We wish you the best and look forward to working with you in this new school year. Thank you!