Time, Talent and State-of-the-Science Treatment
Lindner Center of HOPE, a distinguished leader in offering comprehensive, patient- and family-centered care for people suffering with mental illness and substance use disorders, continues to blaze trails with its state-of-the-science treatment programs and progressive, compelling, clinical research.
The Center has helped more than 30,000 people since its doors opened a decade ago.
“Although Lindner Center of HOPE is a building – a beautiful place – that’s not what makes it special,” says Paul Keck Jr., M.D., the center’s president and chief operating officer. “What makes it special is the incredibly talented group of clinicians and providers we’ve been able to recruit and who practice here. We have expertise in depth and in breadth in just about every common mental illness people struggle with. We work as a team when people need more than one type of care, and we provide every level of service someone could conceivably need. The great blessing of working here is that I get to work with one of, if not the, most talented groups of clinicians in the U.S.”
While Lindner Center of HOPE has a tremendous national reputation, it is still a bit of a well-kept secret in the Greater Cincinnati area, Keck adds. “My hope is that more people, when they have mental health needs, think of us as a community resource. If we can’t provide the type of care someone needs, we will help them find the right place and the right fit.”
The Center – a charter member of the National Network of Depression Centers – provides psychiatric hospitalization and partial hospitalization for individuals age 12 and older, outpatient services for people of all ages, diagnostic and short-term residential treatment services for adolescents and adults, and outpatient services for substance abuse and other co-occurring disorders for adults at its HOPE Center North location.
“Psychiatry is branch of medicine, and like all other branches of medicine, there are two fundamental aspects to taking care of people with medical, or in this case, psychiatric illness,” Keck explains. The first is to arrive at an accurate diagnosis. One of the misconceptions about psychiatry is that diagnoses are vague and ill-defined. In fact, psychiatric diagnoses are as valid and precise as diagnoses in any other field of medicine, and that’s been demonstrated in a number of research studies over the past 2 ½ decades. So, our ability to accurately diagnose mental illness is really quite good, and that really is the first and foremost goal when helping people. If you don’t get the diagnosis right up front, chances are you won’t apply the right treatment or recommend the right treatment, and the outcomes will not be very good.
“The second aspect of [mental health] care is to recommend evidence-based treatment, and that’s what we mean by ‘state-of-the-science,’” Keck continues. “Psychiatry is a very advanced field of medicine in that almost all the treatments we can provide are proven by the scientific gold standard of randomized, double-blind clinical trials. Those are the trials that prove that a new treatment is better than placebo and demonstrate a treatment’s efficacy and safety. Not just with medicines, but also specific forms of psychotherapy as well as devices.”
Linder Center of HOPE is known for leveraging the latest advancements, protocols and proven techniques in treating people diagnosed with mood disorders such as depression and bipolar disorder. Treatment most often involves an integrated combination of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Dialectal Behavior Therapy, insight-Oriented Therapy, family therapy and calibrated medication therapy for long-term positive outcomes. Other state-of-the-science modalities offered through the Center include Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation Therapy (TMS), a proven therapy deemed safe and approved by the Food and Drug Administration, and Electroconvulsive Therapy, an industry standard proven to be safe and low-risk.
One in 10 Americans suffer from a mood disorder, which is often complicated by the presence of another mental illness or addiction, or co-occurring condition, Keck points out. “We do a lot of cutting-edge research in those areas – the [medical] field as a whole and the Center, specifically – and we’ve made great strides in finding newer and safer treatments for those problems. Yes, [mood disorders] can be lifelong struggles, and they can be fatal without treatment. The goal of treatment is to reduce and eradicate symptoms so people get well and stay well.”
“Despite all the advancements in science and all we are learning every day about treating mental illness, none of it is really a substitute for the amount of face-to-face time a clinician spends with a patient,” says Paul Crosby, M.D., chief medical officer at Linder Center of HOPE and associate professor of psychiatry and behavioral neuroscience and pediatrics at the UC College of Medicine. “Since we’ve made it our priority to provide quality mental health care to our patients, we’ve also made it a priority to protect the time our patients have with our expert clinicians.”
That’s the real difference between Lindner Center of HOPE and other mental health care providers, Crosby emphasizes.
“It’s that time that allows a good diagnosis to be arrived at and a detailed state-of-the-science treatment plan to be recommended. That plan can include medications or psychotherapy, but may also include things like pharmacogenetic testing to help guide medication choices. We want everything we do to be firmly grounded in the science available – that’s why we call it evidence-based treatment. But that treatment always includes our priority of face-to-face consultation. It may not sound technologically inviting, but it’s integral in making a good diagnosis and developing the right treatment plan for each patient.”
“We can help people in so many more ways than we could 30 years ago,” says Susan McElroy, M.D., chief research officer at Lindner Center of HOPE. “We have a wide menu of treatment options for most psychiatric disorders. The problem is, we still need better treatments. That’s why our clinical research is so important.”
McElroy currently oversees multiple ongoing studies in mood, anxiety, eating and impulse control disorders, as well as studies in genetics and psychopharmacology. She has authored more than 300 scientific papers published in medical journals and is one of the most often-cited scientists in the psychiatry and psychology fields. Lindner Center of HOPE regularly collaborates with Mayo Clinic, McElroy notes, and is currently involved in a joint study regarding the genetic aspects of bipolar disorder.
“We feel it’s important to do clinical research because it helps us stay on top of advancements in our field. Not only are we actively involved in finding new treatments, we can directly communicate the information to our clinicians,” she says. “It’s great that Lindner Center of HOPE treats patients and does clinical research. Both inform the other. By offering active treatment services, we can understand where there are gaps and, on the research side, we can take an interesting observation by a clinician and study it further. We bring cutting-edge knowledge to our clinicians hot off the press. It’s better than only treating patients or only doing clinical research. The two feed each other and, in the end, patients benefit.”
Options for Opioid Use Disorder
Lindner Center of HOPE’s HOPE Center North location, dedicated to outpatient treatment for substance use disorders and co-occurring mental health and substance use disorders, serves as a community cornerstone in the fight against opioid use disorder. The Center’s Outpatient Addictions Program received The Joint Commission’s Gold Seal of Approval for Behavioral Health Opioid Treatment Accreditation two years ago. The Gold Seal of Approval is a symbol of quality reflecting an organization’s commitment to providing safe and effective care.
“HOPE Center North started as a way to help address this continuously urgent problem of opioid use disorder with medication-assisted treatment. That’s been scientifically found to be the most effective way for a person to get off opioids, stay off, and stay alive,” says Marty Stephenson, HOPE Center North program manager. “Lindner Center of HOPE has an excellent reputation in the community for its great service, cutting-edge treatments and positive patient outcomes. It’s our fundamental treatment philosophy, our goal, to give absolute respect and do anything we can to help every individual who comes to us. Our staff is top-of-the-line, very knowledgeable, professional and caring.”
About 90 percent of HOPE Center North’s patients at this time are being treated for opioid/heroin addiction, and the other 10 percent is being treated for substance use issues involving alcohol, anxiety medications, cocaine and marijuana, she notes.
In conjunction with offering a range of the most effective and beneficial medications proven to help physically and mentally stabilize a person suffering from an opioid-related addiction, Lindner Center of HOPE’s HOPE Center North also offers state-of-the-science, evidence-based treatment practices such as Cognitive Behavior Therapy and Dialectal Therapy in addition to comprehensive case management to address patients’ outside needs.
“We offer the best of the best of what research has shown to be most effective in helping people get sober and maintain their sobriety a long time,” Stephenson says. “We treat everyone who walks through our doors as valuable individuals, and that’s what really works. It’s making a positive difference.”
Lindner Center of HOPE is located at 4075 Old Western Row Rd, Mason, OH 45040. For more information, call 513.536.4673 or visit www.lindnercenterofhope.org. Lindner Center of HOPE, HOPE Center North is located at 4483 State Route 42, Mason, OH 45040. For more information, call 513.536.0050 or visit