Behavioral Medicine and Psychiatry for Children

The behavioral health team at Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital strives to care for the whole child, which includes their mental health, physical health, personal, family, school and community needs. Our experts utilize a multidisciplinary and comprehensive approach to diagnosing and determining the root of the problem; then, they take a biological, psychological and social approach to create a personalized treatment plan for each child. Proper diagnosis and treatment of symptoms and disorders can change your child’s—and your family’s—future.

Our behavioral health team includes pediatric psychiatrists, psychologists, neuropsychologists and behavioral medicine specialists. We provide both hospital-based services as well as outpatient services through a variety of clinics.

Hospital-Based Services

Pediatric Behavioral Health Consultation

This team provides psychiatric and psychological consultation, evaluation and treatment for children with acute illnesses. Our psychiatrists and psychologists work closely with social workers, psychiatric nurses, child life specialists and behavioral health technicians during a medical hospitalization to provide well-rounded and holistic care. If deemed necessary, psychiatric consultation is also available within the children’s emergency department.

Outpatient Services

Child Psychiatry Clinic
Our board-certified child psychiatrists believe the key to preventing and treating mental health disorders is determining a proper diagnosis and developing a comprehensive treatment plan, which can include individual evidence-based therapy, family therapy, group therapy, parent counseling and medication therapy. We work to coordinate care for the patient with the primary care provider, specialty providers, school personnel and community providers. This is a consultative clinic currently meant for short-term stabilization and treatment.

Pediatric Psychology Clinic
Our licensed, pediatric-trained psychologists specialize in the evaluation, diagnosis and treatment of mental health disorders in children and teens. Our diagnostic consultations generally consist of one to three visits and are designed to provide comprehensive diagnostic services as well as identify the best avenue of care for each child and family. As part of the evaluation, we may conduct cognitive, academic, social, emotional and/or personality testing. We also provide evidence-based individual and family treatment with the goals of short-term stabilization, symptom reduction and functional improvement.

Many of our psychologists are also embedded within various subspecialty care clinics in order to provide whole-person, integrated care to patients wherever they are at Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital.

Autism Spectrum Disorders/Developmental Disabilities Clinic
Children between the ages of 18 months and 18 years are seen for an assessment if there is concern that a child may be exhibiting symptoms of an autism spectrum disorder. Assessments are completed by a board-certified developmental and behavioral pediatrician and can also include a multidisciplinary evaluation by a licensed pediatric psychologist and a speech and language pathologist. We also have psychology and psychiatry services available for children who already have a diagnosis of autism or a developmental disability for ongoing assessment and treatment. Our autism spectrum disorders/developmental disabilities clinic is a certified Blue Cross Blue Shield Center of Excellence. 

Neuropsychology Clinic
Our neuropsychologists have completed extensive training and are specialized in pediatric psychology, brain-behavior relationships, specialized neuropsychological assessment, intervention techniques and the practical implications of neuropsychological conditions. They work in collaboration with our subspecialists in a variety of areas, including neuroscience, cardiology and hematology/oncology.

Chronic Pain Clinic
The chronic pain clinic is a multidisciplinary clinic with pediatric specialists from behavioral medicine, pain and palliative medicine, and rehabilitation services. It serves preschoolers through young adults who are experiencing chronic pain for a variety of reasons. A pediatric pain psychologist, pediatric pain physician, advanced practice provider, social worker and physical therapist provide a comprehensive, biopsychosocial pain evaluation to determine the best treatment plans for each patient. We currently provide outpatient pain medicine management, individual and family pain psychology intervention (cognitive behavioral and biobehavioral treatments including biofeedback), physical therapy, social work services, and care coordination with other medical specialties.