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Volume 6, Issue 62  | August 3, 2021

Hoag launches young adults mental health program

In response to the growing concern around mental health, which has been exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, the team of neurobehavioral health experts at Hoag’s Pickup Family Neurosciences Institute has designed an accredited, outpatient program to target the specific mental health needs for young adults ages 18-26.

The Hoag Young Adults Mental Health Program will help individuals in this very vulnerable age group who are struggling with depression, anxiety, trauma, OCD, PTSD and other symptoms relating to a mood disorder or mental health issue and navigate the challenges of the transition into adulthood. Led by a team of experts, this treatment program equips young adults with tools to adopt coping strategies and build healthy relationships.

“The negative impact that the COVID-19 pandemic has had on young adults will be felt for many years to come and it is imperative, now more than ever, to offer a program that supports those transitioning to one of the most crucial stages of life – adulthood,” said Michael Brant-Zawadzki, M.D., F.A.C.R., Hoag’s senior physician executive and the Ron & Sandi Simon Executive Medical Director Endowed Chair of the Pickup Family Neurosciences Institute. “This program empowers young adults to better meet the stresses and pitfalls common to this stage of life.”

The Young Adults Mental Health Program uses dialectical behavior therapy and cognitive behavioral therapy in a group setting. Participants of the eight-week program will meet in person, three days a week to build relationship skills, which can improve effectiveness in school, work and interpersonal situations.

Hoag launches Dr. Safahieh

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Courtesy of Hoag Hospital

Sina Safahieh, M.D.

“Part of what makes our program stand out is the experienced, interdisciplinary treatment team,” said Sina Safahieh, M.D., program director and child, adolescent and adult psychiatrist. “Our licensed therapists are among the top in their field, and with access to Hoag’s superior Pickup Family Neurosciences Institute, we are able to reach young adults with evidenced-based, proven methods.”

The Young Adults Mental Health Program, along with other Hoag Neurobehavioral Health programs, received accreditation from the Counsel on Accreditation for Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF).

A key focus of the program is improving participants’ sense of self to better incorporate strategies related to emotional regulation and distress tolerance. People going through the program will learn and be encouraged to apply effective coping skills to their day-to-day lives.

“As a psychiatrist, I have never seen this level of anxiety and depression in the community as I have over the past year. It is critical at the stage of a person’s life when they’re making the transition between adolescence and adulthood, that they establish and maintain healthy relationships with not only themselves but with family members, friends and the community,” Dr. Safahieh said. “This program will help them to build their own identity.”

Community support through philanthropy is essential to providing these highly demanded services. For more information about how to support the program, call 949.764.7210.

To learn more about the Hoag Young Adults Mental Health Program, visit

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