Mental Health & Substance Use

CHA is proud to be a leader in behavioral health care, teaching and research

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Caring for People of all Ages

Sometimes, life is hard. Knowing where to find help can make all the difference.

At CHA, we care deeply about people and provide support to improve lives. We serve all ages with counseling, therapy, group programs, crisis care and medication management. This includes special programs for people with limited English skills, services for chronic mental illness and addiction and 24-hour hospital care.

New patients: 
You can find a mental health professional by contacting us or using our provider search. Please note that some services are limited to CHA primary care patients and people who live in our service area.

Current patients: 
Please tell your care team if you are having challenges, need refills or need to change an appointment. Just call your provider's office or send a message in MyChart.

Inpatient Services (bed search):
All inpatient psychiatry admissions are coordinated through the CHA Transfer Center: 617-665-1372

Mental Health Resources:
click here for our self help guides

Our Vision for Mental Health Care

Improving Mental Health Care in Massachusetts

The CHA Department of Psychiatry is a leader in patient care and research and plays a key role in supporting the mental health of Massachusetts. We aim to achieve the CHA vision of providing equity and excellence for every one, every time. 

What we are doing

CHA has embarked on a multi-year initiative to provide more access and improve our care: 

Partnering with the Commonwealth of Massachusetts on a major expansion of inpatient psychiatry services to help address the statewide shortage of beds and the record levels of emergency department boarding.

Launching a Community Behavioral Health Center (CBHC) to support the needs of Cambridge, Somerville, Malden, Medford and Everett, MA. As a CBHC, we will be an entry point for timely, high quality mental health and substance use disorder treatment - helping people find the right care when and where they need it. We will provide daily access to intake, assessment, urgent care and crisis care for all ages, in many languages and in a culturally competent manner.  

Revising our academic programs to teach trainees about contemporary treatment methods and help them succeed - whether they choose careers in hospital care, outpatient care, public health, research or education.

Timeframe of this work

Transforming our mental health services is a multi-year effort, and the COVID pandemic has brought new challenges. For example, staffing shortages (which have affected hospitals across the U.S.) have temporarily reduced access in some areas. The good news is that CHA has been highly successful in recruiting new providers. To date, we have filled 85 percent of open positions for therapists and continue to attract applicants from across the nation. As a Community Behavioral Health Center, CHA will begin offering enhanced outpatient care starting in January 2023. 

Thank you to our staff

The CHA Department of Psychiatry has a longstanding commitment to excellent, research-based care, and we are proud of our staff’s dedication to our patients. We appreciate their continued involvement and support as we work together to achieve greater access and health equity in our communities, which is the heart of CHA’s mission.

CHA Psychiatry in the News

CHA Opens new Hospital Services in Somerville: GBH News covered the opening of the CHA Center for Inpatient Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, highlighting our expanded capacity for children in need. The opening comes as the COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated the ongoing mental health crisis and psychiatric bed shortages.

CHA's Trauma Informed Care Highlighted in the Boston Globe: The Boston Globe recently ran a sponsored article highlighting our committment to trauma infomed care in Child Psychiatry. This piece discusses the value of this approach as it relates to young children who have experienced all forms of trauma, such as violence. 

ADHD in the COVID era: The journal Psychiatric Times highlighted the work of CHA psychiatrist Margaret Weiss, MD, PhD, on the connections between attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and COVID-19. Dr. Weiss shared research demonstrating that ADHD is a specific risk factor for acquiring COVID-19, becoming symptomatic and hospitalization. Poor attention, hyperactivity, poor sense of social space, inability to follow instructions and opposition to rules or mandates may partially explain this risk. 

Shortage of acute care psychiatry beds: CHA was featured by WBUR on the crisis facing patients as they wait for mental health beds in Massachusetts. The story, entitled "No Vacancy: How A Shortage Of Mental Health Beds Keeps Kids Trapped Inside ERs" features a patient who was able to access care at CHA and includes an interview with child psychiatrist Linsey Koruthu, MD.

Value-based care and behavioral health: The journal Psychiatric Services highlighted the advantages of transitioning from a fee-for-service payment model to a value-based care model. Co-authors Colleen O’Brien, PsyD, Miriam Tepper, MD, and Andrew Hyatt, MD, shared opportunities to integrate, expand and improve mental health and addictions care. The column aims to inspire other healthcare providers to prioritize behavioral health as a key component of system transformation.

Advice for youth mental health issues: CHA psychiatrist Meredith Gansner, MD, and faculty member Nancy Rappaport, MD, shared advice for struggling parents and children in a commentary posted on WBUR’s Cognoscenti which explored concerns about a rise in youth suicides. 

Services We Offer

  • Outpatient Care
  • Inpatient Services
  • Transitional Services
  • Psychiatric Emergency
  • Outpatient Addictions Programs
  • Recovery Support
  • Connection to community resources

Conditions We Treat

  • Addiction
  • Addiction and Mental Health (dual-diagnosis)
  • Anger
  • Anxiety
  • Chronic mental illness
  • Depression
  • Developmental impairments
  • Emotional or behavioral disorders
  • Learning problems
  • Medication management
  • Neuropsychology testing
  • Psychological problems
  • Serious mental illness
  • Trauma

Where You Can Find Us

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