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What happens at initial evaluation?

Most initial psychiatric evaluations at Life Change Associates take about 60 minutes to complete. The purpose of the evaluation is usually to serve as a diagnostic assessment in order to move treatment in the appropriate direction. In an effort to gather and assess relevant information for accurate diagnosis and treatment, it is critical that a comprehensive approach is taken beginning with the initial evaluation.

Towards the end of the initial evaluation Dr. Ravsten, or one of his Allied Health Providers (AHP), will advise and review recommended treatments based on the diagnostic information gathered from the initial psychiatric evaluation. These recommendations include both medication and non-medication options.

There are specific areas to be covered and considered during the diagnostic evaluation but the initial assessment can be broken into 3 parts. These include:

Part I (15-20 minutes)

Part II (15-20 minutes)

Part III (10-20 minutes)

For most mental health disorders, there is rarely a single “best” treatment option or approach to consider. More typically, there will be several treatment approaches to consider. Dr. Ravsten or the AHP that performs the initial evaluation will provide recommendations based on the current progress of medical science, his/her experience with proven and recommended treatments. This includes a discussion of patient preferences and individual circumstances as part of creating goals and agreement regarding treatment. The ultimate goal of medication therapy is to allow each patient to feel and do as well as possible with few, if any, side effects.