Outpatient services are services that are provided to children in clinics, doctors' offices, schools or other settings. Outpatient treatment is usually the first place for assessment and treatment services for children and adolescents with mental health and behavior problems.
The main outpatient mental health services provided for children in their communities are clinic treatment and day treatment programs. These services are offered by a variety of programs that are licensed by New York State. Families enrolled in a Managed Care or a Health Maintenance Organization (HMO) insurance program may also be referred by their insurance carrier to a participating clinic or practitioner, such as a licensed Social Worker or Psychologist.
NYC Well has a staff of trained mental health professionals that can help callers find the most appropriate mental health and substance abuse services for their needs. Services include counseling, suicide prevention, crisis intervention, peer support, referrals to care, assistance in connecting to the referral, and follow-up services. NYC Well is free and confidential and operates 24 hours per day, 7 days per week via phone, text, and internet chat. NYC Well is multilingual and multicultural:
You can also text WELL to 65173 or go to NYC Well, an online resource for individuals, families and agencies in need of help and information.
A mental health clinic is an office staffed with a group of healthcare providers, including psychiatrists and social workers. The purpose of clinic treatment is to identify and treat emotional disturbance on an outpatient basis, strengthen family functioning, and support children in their natural environments. Most clinic sessions last about an hour and are held one or more times a week. Some clinics have satellite offices, and provide services directly in children's schools. These school-based mental health programs offer services to students and provide consultation on specific students or general mental health issues to teachers and other school staff. Schools may also offer other mental health services. School guidance counselors can provide families with information about services in the school.
Clinic services include:
Who can get services?
How to access a clinic
NYC Early Childhood Clinics
Specialized mental health treatment services and supports for young children (birth to 5 years) and their families using evidence-based and trauma-focused therapies. Call a clinic in your area (PDF) to make a referral or call 1-888-NYC WELL.
Day treatment programs provide comprehensive outpatient mental health treatment to young people who are identified as having a serious emotional disturbance by their school districts and are able to live at home or in the community. They offer a combination of treatment and educational services that give children a full day of special activities to address their mental health needs. These programs offer special education in small classes and are for children who need therapy and help throughout the school day. Some day treatment programs are offered in public schools, while others are offered as completely separate programs. Children in day treatment services continue to live at home and in their communities.
Who can get services?
How to access a day treatment program: