Child and Family Therapy Clinic (CFT)

Part of the Behavioral Psychology Outpatient Programs
Kennedy Krieger Institute • 720 Aliceanna Street, 2nd Floor • Baltimore, MD 21202

Director:

Gina Richman, Ph.D.

Staff:

Caroline DuCoin, Psy.D.
Tana Hope, Ph.D.
John Persampiere, Ph.D.
Kristi Phillips, Psy.D.
Veronica Tilden, Psy.D.

About Our Program:

The Child and Family Therapy Clinic’s mission is to provide high-quality evidence-based treatment to children and families exhibiting a wide range of behavioral and emotional problems. Common problems treated in our clinic include disruptive behavior problems, ADHD, executive functioning difficulties, anger-management, aggression, parent-child conflicts, parent-teen communication difficulties, depression, mood disorders, anxiety disorders, fears, phobias, panic, impulse-control difficulties, school-related difficulties, adjustment-related problems, stress management, emotion-regulation difficulties, mild self-harm/poor coping, and family transition issues. Families may also present with many unique stressors surrounding concerns regarding their child or adolescent’s behavior that include divorce/separation, bullying, peer conflict, military deployment, transition to a new environment, or lack of social support. The clinic serves children and adolescents between the ages of 5 and 18.

The Child and Family Therapy Clinic’s model involves a thorough evidence-based assessment and treatment process. At the beginning of treatment, a careful assessment is conducted that involves a semi-structured clinical interview, relevant questionnaires, and observation of family interaction. The assessment and treatment process often also involve consultation with relevant external systems such as the school or other healthcare providers (e.g., primary care doctors, psychiatrists) and a review of previous mental health records. From the onset of treatment, clear goals are developed in collaboration with the family to improve not only the functioning of the child, but also the functioning of the child’s surrounding family and support system. Families typically attend therapy sessions on a weekly or bi-weekly basis and treatment is aimed to be as brief and time-limited as possible relative to the presenting concerns. Consultations are also provided to families who are not planning to attend on-going therapy. 

Our Treatment Approach:

The Child and Family Therapy Clinic is committed to utilizing evidence-based treatment approaches that involve the child or adolescent and relevant family members. We believe that significant caregiver involvement in the treatment process is essential to a successful treatment outcome. However, we also do provide individual therapy services for children and adolescents when needed.

Our treatment approach is carefully matched to the needs of each unique child or adolescent and their family. Treatment approaches utilized within our clinic primarily involve cognitive-behavioral therapy and family systems therapy. When working with adolescents, we will also utilize additional evidence-cognitive-behavioral approaches such as dialectical behavior therapy and acceptance and commitment therapy. The format of therapy may vary depending on the needs of the child and may include family therapy, individual therapy, communication skills training, or training in executive functioning skills management. 

Professional Training Opportunities:

The clinic's training model combines practical training with a variety of individual and group supervision methods (live, videotape, co-therapy), as well as seminars focused on family therapy. Doctoral interns and postdoctoral fellows are provided with diverse opportunities related to the assessment and treatment of childhood behavior disorders and family dysfunction. Interns and post-doctoral fellows trained on this rotation serve as family therapists and consultants to school staff and other service providers including psychiatrists, primary care physicians, occupational therapists, physical therapists, and speech and language therapists. They are trained to conduct comprehensive evaluations of children in the context of their families and community environments utilizing family systems and behavioral family therapy approaches to treatment, while also working to develop and implement treatment plans based on assessment results following a scientist-practitioner model. Our trainees use a multi-modal approach to measure treatment progress and outcome including verbal report, home and school generated data and direct observation.

Hours of Operation:

Vary by clinician and location. General hours of operation are:

  • Monday - Thursday: 9:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m.
  • Fridays: 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

Contacts:

To make a referral or request an initial evaluation:
Contact our Care Management Office
Toll-Free Referral: (888) 554-2080
Local Referral: (443) 923-9400

Follow-up appointments are scheduled by clinicians.

Related Materials and Information
Additional Diagnoses Served: 
Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)
Anger Management
Adjustment Disorder
Anxiety Disorders
Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder
Fears
Phobias
Depression
Mood Disorders
Impulse Control Difficulties
Oppositional Defiant Disorder
Parent-Child Communication Problems and Relationship Issues
School Behavior Problems
Social Skills Deficits