Does Our Treatment Work?

Is There Scientific Evidence to Support the Treatment Delivered at the Austen Riggs Center?

A consistent and explicit psychodynamic framework guides the Austen Riggs Center’s treatment approach. We integrate a range of interventions, including individual psychotherapy, psychopharmacology, family work, case management, nursing care, and a therapeutic milieu with groups and activities, into a structured treatment approach that offers enough built-in flexibility to meet varying needs while encouraging individual choice and self-expression. In addition, it allows patients to bring their troubled ways of relating, seeing, and interpreting the world to light in order to promote understanding, stimulate development, and encourage more adaptive ways of relating. Though this kind of holistic, integrative approach is widely viewed as clinically helpful – and even essential – when treating complex psychiatric patients, most research necessarily focuses more narrowly on separate techniques and modalities. However, there is ample relevant evidence for the efficacy of aspects of our treatment, broken down into specific topic areas detailed below.