sophisticated assessment and care
When students arrive at Blue Ridge, they will meet with our psychiatrist, Dr. Braunstein. Dr. Braunstein will have an initial consultation with every single student upon admission to establish a systematic review of every student’s history. This allows Blue Ridge Therapeutic Wilderness to provide a thorough intake and psychiatric assessment for every student. Dr. Braunstein does not solely review student medications, but considers the student’s medical and clinical profile to best determine what their needs will be. His assessment and involvement with each student who walks through Blue Ridge’s doors establishes a comprehensive baseline which allows the program to respond to student needs better than ever before.
It is not uncommon for students to arrive at therapeutic placements with medications that could be adjusted, changed, or removed from their medication management plans for better results. The nomadic wilderness setting at Blue Ridge is an ideal environment to stabilize and reassess students’ current medications. Dr. Braunstein provides Blue Ridge families and students with a high level of care and attention surrounding their medication and treatment plan by aligning with the wishes of each student’s family, performing thorough initial consultations upon admission, and collaborating with the rest of the Blue Ridge team to ensure that comprehensive care is ongoing.
Visit our Clinical Assessment page for information about psychological testing at BRTW.
Benefits of Psychiatric Services at Blue Ridge Therapeutic Wilderness
The wilderness is a safe environment to stabilize and reassess current medications. Because the psychiatrist has an initial consultation with every student upon admission, a baseline is established and the program is better able to respond to student needs. It is not uncommon for students to come in on more medication than is helpful, medication that they refuse to take or medication that they are not taking as prescribed. Working with our wilderness psychiatrist can help students and parents determine the appropriate medication approach.
Because we are working with a wilderness psychiatrist, students do not have their wilderness experience interrupted to leave the field for appointments. Because the psychiatrist is part of the Blue Ridge team, collaboration about student care is high and ongoing. In some cases, students underreport substances they have been using. Depending on the substance being used and frequency of use, it may be helpful and even life-saving to work with the wilderness psychiatrist to mitigate withdrawal symptoms.