Dissociative Disorders and Trauma Inpatient Program

Safe and secure care for individuals in crisis

Supporting Trauma Survivors

The Dissociative Disorders and Trauma Inpatient Program provides comprehensive treatment for adults who live with the effects of childhood abuse or other painful traumatic events.

If you struggle with intrusive thoughts and feelings related to traumatic events, emotional numbing and social isolation, memory difficulties, altered perceptions and personality fragmentation, our program may be right for you.

Our staff is particularly attuned to the needs of our patient population and has extensive experience working with individuals who struggle with conditions such as depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, and personality disorders.

The program uses a model of treatment that is highly sensitive to the needs of trauma survivors. Emphasis is placed on the overall psychological health and functioning of the individual and not simply on identifying and working on trauma-related symptoms.

Patients receive help in gaining control over their own experiences so that they can proceed in treatment without being re-traumatized by the intense feelings and experiences that invariably arise throughout treatment.

Find the care that’s right for you or your loved one. Call us today at 617.855.3141.

Treatment at the Intersection of Compassion and Innovation

At McLean, we understand that trauma disorders and symptoms caused by traumatic events or experiences can be unique to the individual. Let us show you why McLean is a leader in the treatment of PTSD and other trauma-related disorders.

Treatment Team

Program Leadership

Michael B. Leslie, MD

Michael B. Leslie, MD, Medical Director

Dr. Leslie’s clinical and research interests include challenges facing the LGBTQ community (especially mental health disparities and positive identity formation) and issues affecting survivors of trauma (including complex PTSD). He is committed to training and serves as a supervisor and teacher within the MGH-McLean residency. Dr. Leslie is the founder and director of the McLean Hospital Initiative for LGBTQ Mental Health.

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Makayla Hourihan, MSN, RN, Nurse Director

As nurse director, Ms. Hourihan supervises the inpatient nursing care of individuals with various psychiatric diagnoses. She joined McLean Hospital as a registered nurse in 2016 on the Community Reintegration Unit. In 2023, she brought her passion for milieu management, leadership, and clinical staff support to the Dissociative Disorders and Trauma Inpatient Program.

Frequently Asked Questions

Where is the program located?

The Dissociative Disorders and Trauma Inpatient Program is located on the Belmont campus, on the second floor of Proctor House. For more information on directions, parking, and local accommodations, please visit our Maps & Directions page.

What is the length of stay at the program? What happens at discharge?

Patients stay at the program between three and seven days. Inpatient stays are brief and focus on acute stabilization and management of crises and psychiatric illness.

Aftercare planning begins immediately upon admission.

Are visitors permitted?

Visitors are permitted, following program policies. Visiting hours are 2-8pm, seven days a week.

Please speak to the patient’s treatment team for more information. Additional details can be found on the Visitors page.

Is there access to a phone? Are cellphones and other electronics allowed?

The nurses station can be reached at 617.855.2512. Patient phone numbers are 617.855.3392 and 617.855.3372.

The patient phones are turned on between 7am and 11pm. Cell phone use is also limited to these hours. Please limit calls on the telephones to 10 minutes. Family members are asked to give the treatment team an unblocked number where they can be reached during business hours.

Patients can talk to the nursing staff regarding emergency calls after 11pm.

Please talk quietly when on the phone as a courtesy to other people on the unit.

When answering the unit phones, please only say “hello” and take a message if the person is not available. Please do not give out any information about patients. It is important to protect the confidentiality of other patients—callers may not be aware that they are calling a hospital unit.

Patients are allowed to hold and use their cell phones and other devices, with some guidelines to prevent disruption of the program and other patients. To respect the privacy of all patients, photographic equipment or recording devices of any kind are not allowed.

If a patient’s cell phone has a camera, they may use the telephone functions only. Patients are asked to sign a cell phone agreement form on admission agreeing to this. If the camera function is used, the patient is not allowed to use their cell phone for the rest of the stay.

What precautions are taken regarding restricted items and sharps?

Our patients are admitted to the unit on sharps restrictions. Sharps are considered to be any item that has the potential to cause harm, self-inflicted or otherwise.

Examples include scissors, nail clippers, tweezers, cell phone and computer chargers, headphones, earbuds, and other cords or straps. Hair dryers are considered sharps. Any makeup or toiletry items in glass containers are considered sharps. We do not allow the use of razors, but electric razors are okay. Flat irons and curling irons are not allowed on the unit. We keep yarn and needles in the office.

To ensure patient safety, the following items are not allowed on the unit: alcoholic beverages, drugs/medications, plastic bags, weapons, knives or other sharp objects, matches/lighters, glass bottles, mirrors, and glass picture frames.

Is family involved in treatment?

Contact between family members and clinical social workers, including family meetings, are encouraged when clinically appropriate and with permission of the patient. Family meetings generally take place on weekday afternoons.

What are the general policies of the program?

Living on a unit with 20 other patients can be stressful. Abiding by the unit policies and keeping an attitude of respect for each other and staff is essential to maintain a safe treatment environment.

Important Information

Patient identification wristbands must be worn at all times to ensure correct identification and administration of all medications.


Each patient must be seen by the designated checks staff member every 15 minutes, or more often if clinically indicated. The checks person is only responsible for doing checks and is not available for other activities, including staff talks, during this time.

Checks are done throughout the night. Staff use flashlights and need to see patients’ faces to assure patient safety.


Smoking and possession of smoking materials are not allowed at any time. We offer nicotine replacement therapy and other support for smoking cessation. E-cigarettes and vaporizers are not permitted.

Families should refrain from bringing patients cigarettes or other smoking materials.


All packages or luggage brought onto the unit by patients or visitors are examined by staff for safety measures.

Items that cannot be kept on the unit may be placed in the property closet.

Patients are strongly encouraged not to bring items of sentimental or monetary value to the hospital. We are unable to assume responsibility for personal items, including money.

Unit Permissions and Sign-Out Board

  • Level 1 (hall restrict): patient must remain on the unit
  • Level 2 (off unit with staff): patient may go off the unit in groups with a staff member

Patients are asked to sign out every time they leave the unit. Off unit group activities include outdoor breaks, walks, and visits to the fitness and recreation center.

The treatment team assesses the patient’s safety status daily.

Room Assignments

The nursing staff makes room assignments based on the clinical needs of individuals and the wider unit. Room changes may occur at any time during the stay.

Patients are asked to socialize in common areas and not to be in each other’s rooms.

Patient rooms should be kept neat and clean. Fresh linens and towels are available in the linen closet. Soiled linens and towels may be placed in the laundry bags located near the bathroom and shower areas.

Dress Code

We advise patients to be cognizant of the clothing they wear, considering the treatment setting.

Patients may be asked to cover noticeable self-injury marks. Clothing with profanities, substances, or other explicit material are not allowed. Wearing hoods is not permitted. Clothing should not be low cut or expose the midriff.

Socks or footwear is required while on the unit for hygienic reasons.


  • Breakfast: 8-8:30am
  • Lunch: 12-12:30pm
  • Dinner: 5-5:30pm

Patients should be sure to let their nurse know of any food allergies.

Menus with meal options (lunch and dinner) for the following day are available at lunchtime. Especially for those who want to request an alternative meal, patients must be sure to come to the dining room during lunchtime to fill out a menu and return it to staff.

If there is a treatment-related reason why a patient cannot attend a group meal, they can let the nursing staff know to make arrangements for a meal to be saved.

Patients are asked to clean up after themselves in the kitchen.


Patients are responsible for coming to the med room for their scheduled medication times:

  • Morning: 8-9am
  • Midday: 12:30-1:30pm
  • Evening: 4:30-5:30pm
  • Night: 8-10pm

Please try to avoid asking for as-needed medication during change of shift reports, 6:45-7:30am, 2:45-3:30pm, and 10:45-11:30pm.

Infection Control

Simple precautions are needed to prevent the spread of infection and to avoid exposure to blood and other bodily fluids (saliva, urine, feces, and vomit), which may contain germs.

  • Wash hands thoroughly after using the toilet, touching wounds, blowing your nose, or before eating or handling food
  • Use only your own fork, knife, spoon, straw, cup, plate, etc., and avoid sharing food or drink with someone else; any food or drink handled or partly eaten should be thrown away in a trash receptacle
  • Personal items like makeup, earrings, razors, nail clippers, and clothing should not be shared
  • Personal hygiene items, such as toothbrushes, soap, brushes/combs, and mouthwash, are kept in patient rooms; they should not be left in the bathroom where others might use them, and do not share them
  • If clothes become soiled with blood or other body fluids, wash them in the washer/dryer on the unit; be sure to use a hot water cycle; ask nursing staff for help if needed
  • Dirty or soiled areas on the unit should be reported to the staff

These guidelines are intended to protect patients and staff. Feel free to discuss questions or concerns with the staff.

Physical Contact / Personal Boundaries

Physical contact between patients or visitors is not permitted for any reason on the unit.

Patients are asked to be mindful of the setting they are in and respect each other’s personal boundaries.

Who is on the treatment team?

The case manager works with patients to identify treatment goals, contain symptoms, develop plans to manage acute stresses, and help develop an aftercare plan. The case manager works with family members, significant others, and community clinicians that patients wish to be involved. Patients meet with their case manager each weekday except on holidays.

The psychiatrist is responsible for prescribing medications, helping with medical problems, supporting the treatment process, and collaborating with community medication prescriber. Patients meet with their psychiatrist each weekday and with a rounding psychiatrist on the weekend and holidays.

Each patient is assigned a nurse and/or a mental health specialist for each shift. These staff members may also be assigned a patient for a staff talk. We encourage patients to take advantage of a staff talk or check-in as needed. This can help the patient to focus on how they are doing, provide education, and support skill development. The nursing staff manage the day-to-day activities of the unit.

Other members of the nursing staff include the nurse director and administrative assistant. The nurse director is responsible for coordinating nursing services on the unit. The administrative assistant is responsible for tasks that allow the unit to function smoothly.

What is treatment like at the program?

Our 21-bed, coed unit provides treatment to individuals who are overwhelmed and in crisis due to a range of difficulties, such as mood disorders, anxiety, post-traumatic stress, dissociation, substance misuse, self-endangerment, and suicidal ideation/behaviors.

The Dissociative Disorders and Trauma Inpatient Program has developed a model of treatment that is sensitive to the needs of trauma survivors. Control of symptoms and stabilization are goals of the inpatient stay, rather than the exploration of traumatic experiences.


Our treatment approach emphasizes respect, collaboration, and interpersonal relationships. Please remember that our attitudes and behaviors affect others and be respectful of other patients and staff, even if feeling frustrated.


Treatment planning is a collaborative effort between the patient and their treatment team. Active participation in the full range of treatment activities, including individual meetings and group programming, is expected and provide the most benefit during admission.


Members of the community are responsible for their personal safety, and we ask that patients refrain from behaviors that are harmful to themselves or others.

We strongly encourage patients to ask for help with any self-destructive impulses before acting and please let staff know of any potentially unsafe situations that may arise.

Interpersonal Relationships

Relationships formed on the unit can be intense. Remember that everyone is at the program to get help with their problems and that it is the staff’s job, not the patient’s job, to help other patients. It is important for patients to stay focused on their own treatment rather than on the treatment of others.

We ask patients not to discuss past traumas or self-endangering behaviors with other patients, individually or during group sessions.

Please maintain the confidentiality of other patients.

We ask that patients do not visit the unit following discharge in order to stay focused on their life in the community rather than on the Dissociative Disorders and Trauma Inpatient Program.

Program Structure

The Dissociative Disorders and Trauma Inpatient Program is a short-term inpatient unit with an average length of stay of up to one week.

Patients are admitted to the unit for many reasons, and each patient has an individualized treatment plan.

Patients are assigned to a treatment team who works with them during their stay. Treatment is focused on stabilization and safety management.

Where can more information be found?

Unit staff are available to answer additional questions. More information may also be found in McLean’s patient guides, including Guide to Arriving at McLean Hospital. Paper copies are available upon request.

Patients may also find this video about our admission process a helpful way to understand how it works. Watch now.

Find Care That’s Right for You

Call us today at 617.855.3141 to learn more about treatment options.