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More About Our Departments

Inpatient Service

The Zucker Hillside Hospital's 220-bed Inpatient Service is divided into general and specialty units.  There are approximately 3,800 admissions per year.

The Inpatient Service's primary goal is to provide psychiatric care to those patients with an acute mental illness.  The Inpatient Service aims to complete a total psychiatric evaluation including a psychiatric, social and family history, as well as examination of mental and physical status and routine laboratory and radiographic studies all culminating in the formulation of an overall treatment plan through team discussions, with final decisions made under the direction of the staff psychiatrist.

The Inpatient Service consists of both general psychiatry and specialty units.  Patients in all phases of the life span are treated on these services beginning with adolescents and continuing with general adult units, as well as geriatric units specially designed to meet the needs of this growing population.  Zucker Hillside also has a women’s unit specializing in the care of pregnant and peripartum patients, an affective disorders unit, and an Early Phase Treatment unit, specializing in the care of those patients who are first presenting with a psychiatry illness.


Ambulatory Care Programs

The Ambulatory Care Programs offer comprehensive outpatient services to a wide variety of patients.  The scope of programs offered includes the Adult Ambulatory Psychiatry, Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, and Geropsychiatry programs.  The goals of these programs are:

  • To provide comprehensive outpatient services
  • To provide state-of-the-art care to patients with serious and persistent psychiatric illnesses
  • To provide specialized ambulatory psychiatric facilities not available at general mental health clinics
  • To offer a facility that provides and coordinates clinical research

 Comprehensive services include:

  • Psychiatric evaluation and treatment using a full spectrum of treatment modalities: psychopharmacology; individual psychotherapy (both exploratory and supportive), group therapy; couples therapy; family therapy; dialectical behavior therapy and cognitive/behavioral therapy
  • Health Assessment
  • Community Residence Programs


Specialty Clinics and programs within the Ambulatory Care Program include:

  • Schizophrenia Track - This program is designed to provide care to the chronically ill schizophrenic patient as well as emergency crisis intervention and short-term care of a less severely ill population.  With specialized Clozapine and Injection clinics, patients are carefully monitored, compliance is enhanced and early signs or symptoms of a potential decompensation are addressed.  The staff works closely with the Department of Psychiatric Rehabilitation and the community residential programs to maximize patient abilities, provide community based sheltered workshops or socialization programs and to assure safe and supportive housing.  The Schizophrenia Track works in close collaboration with the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) Clinical Research Center for Schizophrenia at The Zucker Hillside Hospital.
  • Phobia, Anxiety and Stress Disorders Track - Treatment in this track includes psychopharmacological management, systematic desensitization, supportive therapy and in-vivo exposure.  Both group and individual treatments are offered.  A number of research protocols are conducted at the clinic and are available for patients who fit the inclusion criteria.
  • Geriatric Psychiatry Outpatient Program - This clinic is designed to address the mental health problems of the older adult.  Patients are evaluated by specialists in geriatric psychiatry, psychology, social work, internal medicine and neurology.  Treatment modalities include: individual, couples and group psychotherapy; family assessment; and psychopharmacology.  Support and educational groups for family members of patients are also available.
  • The Psychotherapy Center - This center is designed to provide dynamically oriented psychotherapy (both open-ended and time-limited) for patients who have disorders which manifest themselves in patterns of behavior which interfere with function in a wide range of areas.  This treatment method is designed to help patients gain an understanding and mastery of maladaptive patterns and to trace their roots in personal and psychological development.  Residents are supervised during initial assessments and on-going treatment by senior psychoanalysts and Case Conferences include senior psychoanalysts and senior psychopharmacologists.
  • Early Treatment Program (ETP) -  This program is designed to provide individually tailored clinical care by a multidisciplinary team to patients who are experiencing their first episode of psychosis.  The clinical team is available for referral consultation and ongoing care.
  • Centers for Treatment and Research of Bipolar Disorders and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder -  These centers are designed to provide specialized care and innovative research for patients with these disorders.  Residents participate in treatment of patients in the Centers, supervised by clinicians specializing in those areas.
  • Perinatal Clinic – This clinic specializes in the treatment of women with emotional and psychiatric symptoms during pregnancy and after delivery.  Our specialists keep up to date on the ever-growing research and literature in this field.
  • College Track – The Health System had built relationships with local colleges, including Hofstra University, to provide full psychiatric evaluations and continuing care for their students.  Medical management as well as psychotherapy options are available.  This clinic provides greater access to care for a large number of patients during a stressful period in their lives.


Adult Day Programs

The Zucker Hillside Hospital provides multiple, specifically targeted day programs for patients who do not require 24-hour hospitalization but who would benefit from more treatment contact than can be provided in a clinic setting.  Facilities, both on-campus and in the community, provide Partial Hospitalization, Continuing Treatment, Intensive Psychiatric Rehabilitation and Day Training Programs, each with graded degrees of intervention intensity to match patients' capacities and levels of need.  Well over 300 patients are enrolled in these programs at any one time.

The central emphasis of each of these programs is the rehabilitation of patients with persistent disabling psychiatric conditions.  The goal is the patient’s ability to enhance their functional capacity and move toward the social and vocational mainstream.  Major treatment research projects are in progress to assess optimal psychopharmacological and neuropsychiatric rehabilitation strategies.  These projects are integrated with psychotherapeutic, psycho-educational and family treatment approaches to form a unique set of integrated interventions.



The Zucker Hillside Hospital has a long history of research productivity and excellence. The Research Division is led by Anil Malhotra, M.D. and includes a faculty of 14 MD/PhD level investigators and approximately 60 part-time and full-time Masters-level investigators and support staff.  The Research Division’s primary facility is the Leon Lowenstein Research Building, which includes offices, testing laboratories, a video studio and a dedicated Research Clinic.  The hospital is an ideal setting for clinical psychiatry investigations because of its large and varied patient population and its extensive array of clinical programs.  A majority of our patients are local residents, which facilitates engaging family members in providing background data as well as in participating in other aspects of research.  The treatment setting provides high quality clinical care for both inpatients and outpatients. The very highly trained professional staff is an excellent source of clinical observation data which can often enhance research assessments.  As the lead psychiatric facility of the North Shore-LIJ Health System, investigators at The Zucker Hillside Hospital can also collaborate with other institutions in the network to extend these patient resources.  Moreover, the Research Division is a leading Center within the Feinstein Institute of Medical Research, the research component of the Health System.

Zucker Hillside Hospital has been the site of a National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)-funded Research Center in Schizophrenia (PI:  John Kane, M.D.) for over 20 years.  The Center provides infrastructure support that enables its investigators to compete successfully for federal and foundation funds.  In addition to the Center, The Zucker Hillside Hospital has multiple ongoing projects funded by the NIMH, and also receives support from foundations and other sponsors.  There are usually more than 50 active clinical studies at the hospital at any given time.  These include investigations of schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, depression, anxiety disorders and tardive dyskinesia.  Patients in these studies range from children at risk for illness to those with geriatric disorders.  A major focus, deriving from the presence of two NIMH supported Centers, is the study of patients with schizophrenia, covering all phases of the illness from the putative prodromal phase, through the first episode, to chronic patients who are refractory to clozapine.  Zucker Hillside Hospital may be unique in terms of its broad span of research activity in schizophrenia.  The Zucker Hillside Hospital has recently received a $25 million contract from the NIMH for an innovative study entitled, “The Recovery After an Initial Schizophrenic Episode” (RAISE).  Schizophrenia is a chronic debilitating illness that robs people of their lives.  The goal of RAISE is to test the impact of the best available treatments with the anticipation that this will alter the course of the illness and allow patients to lead lives that have fulfilling careers and relationships.

Study designs within the department include long-term naturalistic outcome designs, controlled pharmacological treatment trials and intensive cross-sectional biologic assessment protocols.  One large-scale project provides long-term treatment and multi-dimensional assessment of patients experiencing their first episode of schizophrenia; neuro-imaging, pharmacogenetic and psychosocial assessments are employed.  Another important area of study is severe mental illness in adolescence – represented by studies of adolescent bipolar disorder and refractory childhood schizophrenia.  A geropsychiatry group focuses on characterization and treatment of severe behavioral disturbances and depression in the elderly.  Specialized assessment methods include neuropsychology, psychophysiology and brain imaging using magnetic resonance imaging and positron emission tomography.  A major area of focus is the use of molecular genetics approaches to understanding psychiatric illness and response to medication treatment.


Child and Adolescent Psychiatry

The Division of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry is based at both the Steven and Alexandra Cohen Children's Medical Center of New York and The Zucker Hillside Hospital.  Clinical services include:

  • Adolescent Inpatient unit - The Adolescent Inpatient unit is a 20-bed unit located in our new Behavioral Health Pavilion for adolescents between the ages of 13 to 18.  The Adolescent Unit is a short-term, acute care unit.  Training opportunities for residents include individual and family evaluations, individual, group and family psychotherapies, psychopharmacologic interventions and behavioral treatments.
  • Ambulatory Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Services - The Ambulatory Service provides a wide array of specialized programs for children, adolescents and their families.  This service has the unique ability to provide evaluation and treatment to a broad population that covers the entire socio-economic spectrum and a wide range of diagnostic classifications.  The Ambulatory Service treats patients in individual, group and family therapy and uses an extensive array of therapeutic modalities, ranging from insight-oriented to cognitive behavioral therapy.  An average of 1200 families are registered and there are approximately 20,000 visits a year.  Sub-specialty programs include: a Crisis Intervention Program that enables rapid evaluation and intervention for families in acute crisis; a Sexual Identity Service that evaluates and treats children with gender dysphoria; a Psychopharmacology Service that provides evaluation and treatment for youngsters and serves as a consultation service to practitioners in the community; and specialized psychopharmacologic and psychosocial interventions for youngsters suffering from Pervasive Developmental Disorder and Mental Retardation.
  • School Mental Health - The Division staffs three on-site mental health clinics in public schools.  An extensive array of services including: harm reduction, bully prevention programs, teacher training in behavioral management, trauma related counseling, and case-based consultation are provided to some 30 different school districts.
  • Consultation-Liaison Service - The Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Division provides Consultation and Liaison services to the entire Steven and Alexandra Cohen Children's Medical Center of New York, and to the Department of Pediatrics at North Shore University Hospital.  In addition to consultations on patients throughout the hospital, this service makes inpatient rounds with pediatricians, attends pediatric conferences and consults to the pediatric sub-specialty clinics.
  • Eating Disorders Center - The Eating Disorders Center consists of an outpatient, day treatment facility and an inpatient service specializing in the treatment of children and adolescents with eating disorders. The program provides comprehensive multi-disciplinary treatment which addresses the biopsychosocial needs of the eating disorders patient.
  • Research - The Child and Adolescent Division is actively involved in research in several clinical areas.  Current NIMH-supported grants include a psychopharmacologic studies of 1) lithium for the treatment of children and adolescents with bipolar disorder, 2) a comparison of valproate vs. risperidone for the adjunctive treatment of aggression in children with ADHD, 3) a comparison of the addition of metformin vs. healthy lifestyle counseling to mitigate weight gain associated with antipsychotic medications.  Another area of active research in the Division is the early ascertainment, characterization and treatment of pre-psychotic youth.
  • Education - The Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Division has a two-year child and adolescent residency with nine residents per year.  The Division also has a post-doctoral fellowship in clinical child psychology, as well as a clinical child psychology internship program, and a psychology externship program.    Experiences in child and adolescent psychiatry are fully integrated into the adult psychiatric residency training program.


Geriatric Psychiatry

The Geriatric Psychiatry Division was established in 1989 to meet the growing mental health needs of a rapidly expanding geriatric population.  Over 600,000 elderly people reside in communities served by The Zucker Hillside Hospital.  Zucker Hillside's Geriatric Psychiatry initiatives represent a uniquely comprehensive mental health delivery service for the elderly in this area.

  • Geriatric Psychiatry Inpatient Units - We have two 20-bed acute psychiatric units for patients over 65 years of age.  As specialty units, they are devoted to state-of-the-art assessment and treatment of geriatric patients with psychiatric and neuropsychiatric illness.
  • Geropsychiatry Outpatient Program - A multi-dimensional ambulatory service, it meets the mental health needs of elderly patients and their families.  Staffed by psychiatrists, fellows, residents, psychologists, social workers, geriatric medicine and neurological consultants, this Clinic centralizes and integrates gerontological expertise to provide comprehensive services.  Innovative programming includes dementia services, psychoeducational needs of families, a homebound elderly program and consultation to nursing homes.
  • Geriatric Psychiatry Partial Hospital Program - This unique program serves as an alternative to inpatient hospitalization.  The 15-20 daily attendees receive individual and group therapy, psychopharmacotherapy, social skills training and psychiatric rehabilitation services from a multidisciplinary staff of gerontological mental health professionals, including trainees of all disciplines
  • Geriatric Psychiatry Consultation - Liaison Program.  In collaboration with the Division of Consultation-Liaison Psychiatry, a Geriatric Psychiatry Consultation-Liaison Program has been established to provide subspecialty services to the large number of older patients in the medical-surgical setting.
  • Education -  Residents rotate through the Geriatric Psychiatry Division developing both inpatient and outpatient expertise.  An indigenous multi-disciplinary curriculum, journal club, case conference and family conference buttress individual supervision.  The service also maintains a one-year Geriatric Psychiatry Fellowship program now required for eligibility to sit for the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology examination to establish added qualification in geriatrics.
  • Research - Geriatric psychiatry faculty work collaboratively with the North Shore–LIJ Health System’s Litwin Zucker Research Center for the Study of Alzheimer’s Disease and Memory Disorders.


Consultation-Liaison Psychiatry/Psychosomatic Medicine

The Division of Consultation-Liaison Psychiatry, one of the most highly respected in the country, provides inpatient visits at two tertiary care hospitals (Long Island Jewish Medical Center and North Shore University Hospital/Manhasset) and ambulatory visits through the HIV Clinic at North Shore University Hospital.  R-1 and R-2 psychiatry residents and fellows rotate through both hospitals, giving them exposure to perhaps the most diverse patient population and educational experience in the country.  Medical students do electives in the C/L Service at North Shore University Hospital, which has a history of mentoring trainees who go on to excellent careers in C/L Psychiatry.  Through education and liaison programs, the consultation-liaison service has formed excellent relationships with the medical, ob-gyn and surgical staffs.  We are proud of this tradition of interdisciplinary care.

In addition to their clinical rotation, R-2 residents receive 15 weekly didactic lectures in Consultation-Liaison Psychiatry, thus assuring a solid knowledge base in this specialty.  During their clinical rotation, residents participate in a weekly service-wide clinical case conferences and team rounds each day.  Both serve to enhance education and clinical care.  The C-L psychiatry services are enriched by a diverse group of well-respected attending physicians, fellows and medical students.  R-4 residents may select elective programs in clinical, research or teaching aspects of consultation-liaison.  House Staff from other clinical specialties may also rotate through the Consultation-Liaison Service.

The Consultation-Liaison Service is actively involved in clinical research.  Members of our faculty have received numerous national awards and have served on national committees in Consultation Liaison Psychiatry.  They have also published a text on liaison psychiatry, a book on end-of-life decision-making and numerous influential papers in consultation liaison psychiatry and palliative care.  Current research interests include the study of medical communication as a formal treatment, how psychiatric illness such as dementia and delirium affect length of stay; screening for mental disorders in primary care, coronary care units and medical floors; decisions to terminate treatment at the end of life, and physician attitudes and knowledge about do-not-resuscitate orders.


Addiction Treatment Services

The Division of Addiction Treatment Services is responsible for providing treatment services to addicted patients and their family members who live in communities surrounding Long Island Jewish Medical Center and North Shore University Hospital.  The Division is composed of many substance abuse treatment programs. These diverse programs are located at both medical centers and within the communities they serve.

Psychiatric residents rotate during the R-3 year at three outpatient substance abuse treatment programs.  In addition to providing general chemical dependency treatment, each substance abuse program has a unique area of expertise to which residents are exposed.  The Addiction Recovery Service provides comprehensive care to patients and their families and has special expertise in the treatment of opioid dependence.  The Elmont Treatment Center provides an introduction to structured group treatment of chronic alcohol and other drug dependence.  Project Outreach offers residents experience with patients whose chemical dependence is complicated by other types of psychiatric illness.

Among the research activities of the Addiction Treatment Services are trials of novel psychopharmacologic agents for addiction, measuring the effectiveness of treating comorbid psychiatric disorders and comparing the effectiveness of different staff training models.  The Division is a member of the National Institute on Drug Abuse Clinical Trails Network.  Senior residents may choose to participate in research as part of a comprehensive R-4 elective.


Hillside Medical Service

The Hillside Medical Service provides primary care for patients at Hillside and internal medicine consultation when requested by the treating psychiatrist.  The service is staffed by Board certified internists and neurologists.   It provides special expertise in those areas where medicine and psychiatry overlap, such as adverse reactions to psychotropic drugs including: orthostatic hypotension, sleep apnea, nausea, cardiac complications, hepatotoxicity, falls, confusion, diabetes insipidus and electrocardiographic abnormalities.  It also provides the work-up of medical illnesses that may present as behavioral disorders.  There is on-site consultation by gastroenterology, nephrology, cardiology, neurology and gynecology, as required.  To enable residents to become familiar with basic EKG interpretation, primary care and the areas mentioned above, the Service provides teaching rounds, conferences on medical topics of interest to psychiatrists and clinical conferences with neurology and psychiatry.


Psychiatric Rehabilitation

The Department of Psychiatric Rehabilitation offers a range of programs and services designed to assist patients who are disabled from psychiatric disorders to recover life roles in the community (e.g. participating in work, school, social and leisure activities).  Research has shown that productive activity may reduce the duration and frequency of hospital stays among patients diagnosed with psychiatric illnesses. To help them to stabilize following an illness exacerbation, patients receive individualized functional assessments, and skills groups directed toward improving patients' competency and stability in these life role areas. Through this treatment, the patients’ difficulties in returning to the community, vis-a-vis roles and needs confronting them, are targeted for remediation.

Psychiatric Rehabilitation brings together a number of specialized disciplines including: rehabilitation counseling, occupational therapy, vocational rehabilitation, neuropsychology and recreation therapy.  Assessments and activities are prescribed from the first day of hospitalization as a requisite of treatment in the Hillside therapeutic milieu. Assessment groups and skills-training groups are some of the activities provided to identify skill deficits. Activities of daily living and vocational planning are all utilized in this treatment program. The Department uses cognitive learning groups to address problems patients face with daily living routines, which is crucial to the patient's recovery and successful return to the community. A specialized program of neurorehabilitation deals with cognitive deficits and remediation. The Department has four community-based rehabilitation programs providing intensive rehabilitation treatment for patients following discharge. These programs offer a range of psychiatric rehabilitation services including counseling, assessment and skills training to help patients develop goals and needed supports for improved community life functioning, as well as vocational programs that include job training, job placement, job coaching (supported employment) and consumer businesses.


Social Work Services

The Department of Social Work Services provides clinical and concrete services to patients, their families and significant others related to their psychiatric disorders and functioning in the community.  Treating patients in our outpatient and inpatient service areas, the social worker provides a range of therapeutic modalities, psycho-education, assistance with entitlements, other resources and continuous care planning.

The social work staff is responsible for working with the patient, patient's family and the interdisciplinary treatment team in formulating ongoing treatment plans as well as plans for continuity of care.  This involves assessment of appropriate community resources as these relate to the patient's bio-psychosocial needs.  For patients on the inpatient service, the discharge planning process is an ongoing one which begins at the point of admission and continues throughout the hospitalization.  A psychosocial assessment, performed on admission, includes evaluation of clinical presentation, family dynamics, residential history, insurance coverage, entitlement eligibility, current psychiatric treatment. The social worker makes ongoing patient assessment and interacts with the multidisciplinary team regarding comprehensive continuity of care planning which could involve housing, treatment and other services. The social worker is involved with family and other collaterals continue treatment as well as to implement a plan that maximizes functioning in the least restrictive setting.

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