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Adolescent Psychiatry High Risk Program

From Syracuse.com | Suicide prevention therapy at Upstate Medical University shines promising light

Contact Us

 For further information, or for an intake, please call 315 464- 3117 


Psychiatry High Risk Program                                       
719 Harrison St, 3rd Floor
Syracuse, NY 13210
Phone: 315 464-3117
Fax: 315 464-3263

For questions about billing or payment, please call 315 464-1558



Adolescent Psychiatry High Risk Program

The Adolescent Psychiatry High Risk Program (A-PHRP) is an innovative, nationally recognized suicide prevention program providing recovery-based treatment for adolescents (ages 14 to 17) who struggle with thoughts of suicide.  The A-PHRP is a specialized extension of our current PHRP, which provides treatment for youth and young adults ages 14 through 40 years. It has been awarded the designation of “a best practice” in suicide prevention by the National Suicide Prevention Resource Center.

Adolescents in our program typically experience one or more of the following mental disorders:

  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Borderline Personality Disorder
  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
  • Eating Disorders
  • Addictions

In the U.S., suicide prevention is typically managed through treating the symptoms of these mental disorders through medications, supportive therapy, and occasional hospitalizations.  Instead of simply managing symptoms, the PHRP introduces a new and unique treatment model that attempts to break the cycle of chronic illness by addressing the underlying causes of suicide, such as impaired emotion processing, relationship issues, and a negative self-image.  As these underlying causes are addressed, many individuals find transformative healing, renewed hope, and resilience to stress, and are no longer impaired by mental disorders.


What to Expect

 A careful and comprehensive assessment over 3 to 4 sessions is provided to tailor the treatment plan to individual needs.  During this consultation period, individuals should remain under the care of their current therapist and medication provider. Once admitted to the program, adolescents are provided with 12 months of weekly individual treatment with dynamic deconstructive psychotherapy, an evidence-based treatment (see www.sprc.org)DDP helps adolescents to heal from a negative self-image and impaired processing of emotionally charged experiences, while working towards self-acceptance and more fulfilling relationships (see Upstate DDP). On-going family therapy is strongly encouraged, and group therapy and medications may be added as needed.  With the exception of stimulants for younger adolescents, controlled substances are not prescribed through the program since these can sometimes worsen mood instability and suicide-related behaviors.  In order to ensure that the highest quality and effective care are provided, the program includes an extensive quality assurance program, such as monitoring of progress through quarterly outcome assessments and regular peer consultation. 

The providers are in-network for most plans of Aetna, CDPHP, MVP, Excellus, Federal BCBS, Nationwide Blue Cross/Blue Shield, Fidelis and Molina Medicaid, and UMR.

See link below for a brief podcast overview of the program:

Psychiatry High Risk Program 


See documents below for the PHRP Intake Packet and Brochure:

Intake and Brochure

Your Care Team

  • Skye Celi, BSW, Case Manager
  • Danielle Davis, LCSW-R. Therapist
  • Nichole Galla. Intake Coordinator
  • Jessica Helfrich. Research and Testing Coordinator
  • Rachael Kuch-Cecconi, MD, Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist 
  • Alexandra McCarthy, LCSW. Therapist
  • Rebecca Shields, DO. Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist and Director of the A-PHRP
  • Robert Gregory, MD. Director of the PHRP


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