Skip to main content

How do you choose the right Partial Hospitalization Program (PHP)? Selecting the appropriate PHP is an essential consideration for anyone seeking quality mental health care. Partial Hospitalization Programs (PHP) provide a structured environment with solid therapeutic and recreational activities that can last a few hours per day or as long as eight hours per day for up to five days a week, depending upon the needs of the patient.

Southern Live Oak Wellness, in the heart of Atlanta, Georgia, makes it easy to find a customizable PHP program that works for your needs. This article will explore everything you need to know about how to choose a Partial Hospitalization Program that will fit your needs, so you can get the care that your journey to recovery laid out before you truly deserves. 

Southern Live Oak Wellness Clinic Lobby

Understanding Partial Hospitalization Programs

A PHP is a comprehensive mental health treatment program that combines intensive therapeutic services during the day with at-home housing in the evenings. PHP typically serves as a treatment level between outpatient therapy and inpatient hospitalization. It provides more structure for patients than outpatient therapy but without the 24-hour observation and treatment of inpatient hospitalization.

How Partial Hospitalization Programs Differs from Other Treatment Programs

Perhaps most importantly, PHP bridges the gap between inpatient care and outpatient care because it allows individuals to receive hours of intensive care while still having the capacity to continue with home and work responsibilities outside treatment hours. Consequently, PHP can be the perfect environment for those in need of significant support but who also need to maintain a home life and be in school/work to do so.

Benefits of Partial Hospitalization Programs

PHP offers numerous benefits, including:

  • Intensive, focused treatment that addresses severe mental health issues.
  • Flexibility that allows patients to integrate therapy into their daily lives.
  • A supportive environment that encourages peer interaction and community.
  • Access to a variety of therapeutic modalities, enhancing overall care quality.

Identifying Your Needs for a PHP Program

Assessing Your Mental Health Condition

Mental Health Care Facility Checklist

You need to be aware of your mental health needs before you choose a PHP. How severe is your condition? Is there another illness you need to treat at the same time? How is your health? It might help to consult with a mental health professional for advice and insight about your treatment needs. You can work with the professional to help determine the nature of your illness (together, you can confirm your diagnosis), then talk to them about potential PHPs that align with your unique goals in treatment.

Another key aspect of finding the right PHP, of course, is identifying your personal treatment goals. You might want to manage your symptoms for the foreseeable future, address your symptoms and their underlying causes, or pursue long-term recovery. These goals will help you determine whether the PHP you choose is a good fit for your needs. 

Researching Potential PHP Providers

It’s important, then, to do your homework before choosing a PHP. Knowing about the various forms and quality of PHP care will help you select a program that will best serve your needs. 

When researching PHP providers, consider factors such as:

  • Program reputation and reviews
  • Success rates and patient testimonials
  • Types of therapies and services offered
  • Staff qualifications and experience

How to Find Reputable PHP Providers

If you’re looking for a reputable PHP provider, ask for a referral from your healthcare providers, read online reviews, and look into accredited mental health facilities in your area. Our PHP at Southern Live Oak Wellness in Atlanta takes pride in offering clinically informed services that emphasize healing and have a strong focus on the patient. 

Most importantly, make sure that your PHP provider is licensed or accredited. Look for accreditation from trustworthy organizations that can give assurance that a program meets a certain level of care and safety.

You can also measure a program’s quality by the qualifications and years of experience of the staff. Check the staffing at the PHP and look for programs where the staff are licensed therapists, psychiatrists, or other mental health or medical professionals with specific training and experience in Partial Hospitalization Programs.

Additionally, you’ll want to take a close look at the types of treatment approaches and methods they use; good Partial Hospitalization Programs will often base their services on evidence-based practices such as cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) and other forms of psychotherapy that have been demonstrated to work.

How to Choose The Right Partial Hospitalization Program: Program Components

  • Individual Therapy: A big part of PHP is individual therapy, which provides one-on-one attention and treatment that is tailored toward the individual. Personal interaction can help to identify and confront one’s issues, with the objective of personal growth.
  • Group Therapy: Group is a nice peer support and a chance to learn from others too. This part has the potential to foster a real community feeling by sharing experiences.
  • Family Therapy: In family therapy, members of the patient’s family are included in their treatment program. This keeps the family informed, aligned, and supportive of the treatment process, ultimately helping to improve family dynamics and supporting the patient’s recovery.
  • Medication Management: Medication management is a critical part of appropriate care for those who need pharmacologic treatment. Effective management of medications involves the appropriate use of prescription medications.
  • Holistic Treatments: Many holistic treatments – from yoga and art therapy to drum circles and mindfulness practices – are added to PHP treatment programs to complement the traditional recovery process. These therapies account for the mind-body connection and keep the whole person on top of the mind.

Daily Schedule and Routines

Knowing what a PHP’s daily schedule and routine look like is also important. A well-planned program should incorporate a good balance of therapy sessions, recreational activities, and free time to help clients develop.  Partial Hospitalization Programs varies in length of stay depending on the needs of the individual and the goals set for treatment. PHP does last for weeks for many individuals and even months if there are specific treatment goals that need to be accomplished.

A good Partial Hospitalization Program will also have a high level of flexibility and individualization, creating a flexible treatment plan with milestones that can be adapted as the patient’s recovery course ebbs and flows. Also, consider the location of treatment as well. The location and facilities that a PHP provider offers can make a huge difference in the experience. A practice like Southern Live Oak Wellness where clients are welcomed in a peaceful, comfortable environment can enhance the healing experience quite a bit.

A sense of connection and peer interaction are key factors in Partial Hospitalization Programs. Ensuring that patients feel accepted and part of a group (belonging) and helping them create a network of relationships with others in their group (social support) are critical and often neglected components of the PHP experience that could enhance the therapeutic experience.

Before deciding on PHP, you need to know the cost and be aware of all the additional fees, particularly for ancillary services or therapies that might come with an extra charge. You may wish to ask whether your PHP is in-network for your insurance plan, and if your insurance will cover a portion of the costs. Some programs have a pay-as-you-earn agreement or financial need assistance to help you afford treatment.

Importance of Professional Guidance

Man and woman discussing what to look for in a residential treatment program

Seeking out advice from mental health professionals who can guide you through your decision-making process on an ideal PHP is highly beneficial. Physicians and social workers who have received similar treatment for eating disorders can be helpful resources through this process.

When it comes to deciding on what kind of mental health treatment is appropriate for you, getting some advice from a professional can be of great help. Speak with a mental health professional about your options to pick the Partial Hospitalization Program that’s right for you. At Southern Live Oak Wellness, we’re here to help provide guidance and support.

PHP Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q: What is the difference between PHP and inpatient treatment?

A: For PHP, patients receive intense treatment during the day and return home in the evening, whereas inpatient care requires around-the-clock residential care.


Q: How long does a typical PHP last?

A: The length of time, however, is relative, but it usually lasts from several weeks to several months according to need and progress.


Q: What types of therapies are included in PHP?

A: PHP offers individual therapy, group sessions, family sessions, medication oversight, and holistic treatments such as yoga and art therapy.


Q: Can I work or attend school while participating in a Partial Hospitalization Program?

A: PHP is intended to be flexible, so typically people can still be productive by continuing to work or attend school.

Learn More about Choosing Our Partial Hospitalization Program

Choose the right partial hospitalization program with SLOW

Finding a Partial Hospitalization Program (PHP) that works for you is a make-or-break for your mental health journey. Our PHP program, designed with options for all individual needs, is compassionate and comprehensive and can bring the treatment and support you need to help you fully recover to your life.  We look at the individual as a whole person, assessing all aspects to provide the best treatment and care for your mental health recovery. Contact us today to learn more about how you can get started!

Ready To Get Started

Take the first step towards the future you deserve.

Our Testimonials

What Our Clients Say

  • star star star star star

    I have so much to say about this wonderful place, but I’m sure my words will never do my experience justice. Southern Live Oak Wellness and it’s people not only helped me find myself again, but they saved my life.

    Alex M.

    Johns Creek, GA
  • star star star star star

    Southern Live Oak Wellness saved my life. The therapists genuinely care about the clients and helping them get better. Working on yourself is not easy, but the therapists help guide you and make you be able to work through whatever may be going on.

    Rachel S.

    Lawrenceville, GA
  • star star star star star

    I can easily say that Southern Live Oak wellness saved my life. I had hit rock bottom when I first got admitted and they helped me build myself up from nothing. I have learned how to cope with things I never thought I would be able to handle.

    Taylor R.

    Dallas, GA
    • star star star star star

      Going to SLOW has impacted my life in ways I never thought possible. I came for help with my mental state and came out with so much more; life skills, medical advice, mental health counseling and addiction treatment. SLOW is a whole life transformation program and I highly recommend it to anyone I know!

      Kaylan F.

      Kennesaw, GA
    • star star star star star

      When I was a part of this program, I had the most personal growth I’ve had in my entire life. All of the tech staff were willing to talk to me whenever I felt like I needed someone to talk to and the group sessions gave me multiple perspectives I never would’ve thought of from people in similar situations to me.

      Dylan C.

      Belleville, IL
    • star star star star star

      This place has changed my life. For the first time in my life I felt heard and cared about. The clinical staff is amazing. The groups are well structured. You learn a lot of different skills to help you in life this is the best mental health facility to come to.

      Ashley H.

      Brunswick, GA

      Contact Us

      Take the first step towards the future you deserve.