The Dealing with Pain (IOP) Program

  • A seven-week, curriculum-based Cognitive Therapy program,
  • Designed to achieve/maintain stability for individuals with severe and persistent pain,
  • The ‘foundation’ for a fully Integrated Medical-Behavioral Health Continuum-of-Care, and
  • A Family Education/Support Center of Excellence supervised by licensed therapists as well as Medical Doctors.


Treatment is individualized and encompasses four components awareness and management:

  • Physical Wellness
  • Spiritual Wellness
  • Family Wellness

Additional interventions and support are can include:

  • Individual therapy,
  • Family support,
  • Psychoeducational therapy,
  • Medication management and
  • Vocational adjunct support.

Length of Program

The ‘Dealing with Pain’ IOP Program meets ‘up to’ four days per week for three-hour sessions (participants meet initially attend four days per week with treatment modification allowed by participant and treatment team to no less than three sessions per week).

Who Oversees the Program?

The program is overseen by counselors, licensed therapists and Medical Doctors.


Admission into the program is:

  • Clinically based, and
  • Determined by the Medical Director and Program Director.

Each participant will have three assessments:

  • Medical
  • Psychiatric

Admission criteria includes the following variables:

  • Demonstrated symptomology consistent with DSM-V (Multiaxial system) diagnosis with reasonable expectation to respond to therapeutic intervention,
  • Chronic pain history,
  • Motivated to attend and capable of participation in all phases of program,
  • Non-active suicidal or homicidal thinking or recent behavior (i.e., suicidal gesture within past four weeks); Personality disordered individual’s ‘may be’ invited to participate ‘if’ the Medical Director and Program Director agree; Actively engaged in out-patient care with medical/mental health professional/agency,
  • World Health Organization Disability Assessment Scale (WHODAS 2.0) six domain measurement scores (cognition, mobility, self-care, getting along, life activities, participation), and
  • Medically stable; medication compliant.

Exclusion Criteria

(Factors for Admission)

  • Individual is danger to self/other,
  • Medical impairment, and
  • Structure/supervision beyond scope of program.

Family Involvement

The Dealing with Pain Program provides education and support to families so they may better understand the client’s unique “pain management” and cognitive functioning. Family/caretakers are included in the treatment plan and are provided (with client’s permission) a documented treatment plan with weekly audits and adjustments.

‘Continued Stay’ 

To remain in the program, participants sign a ‘participation’ agreement that addresses the  following criteria:

Program participation and compliance and Progress in relation to specific symptoms or impairment clearly evident.

The ‘Dealing with Pain’ IOP curriculum components have been developed based on Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (theoretical construct) and include the following:

  • Daily Goal Preparation Notes
  • Mindfulness
  • Cognitive Therapy
  • Behavioral Analysis
  • Interpersonal Effectiveness
  • Emotional Regulation
  • Distress Tolerance
  • Daily Planning
  • Discharge Planning
  • Coping/Crisis.

Upon graduation from the IOP, graduates will have an individualized detailed self-workbook that identifies unique thinking patterns and mindfulness tools that will provide reinforcement tools learned over the course of the program.

Participants who complete the program will seamlessly transition to community support services (i.e.; psychiatrists, psychotherapist, etc.). The participant will have his/her program individualized notebook that will have identified the individuals thinking pattern/s and will have identified and given opportunities to practice mindfulness tools to better cope and deal with life’s events. Community therapists, along with the participants, may use the participant’s notebook as a ‘road map’ to continue to move forward toward better and more fulfilling functioning.

The Benefits & Cost

  • Cognitive functions are assessed and documented
  • Information provides insight for caregivers, families and medical professionals
  • Documentation can provide an early warning signal indicating possible decline
  • Documentation provides information and tools for families to recognize the need to move their “loved one” to the next care level and/or in some cases reduce the therapeutic intervention
  • The program requires a small upfront fee (includes staff training) with a monthly fee based on the number of participants

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