Columbia University Medical Center
NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital The University Hospital of Columbia and Cornell

Day Treatment Program

The Columbia University Day Treatment Program is a unique, comprehensive service that provides structure and support to normally high-functioning adults in crisis.

Contact: 212 326-8441

Located in midtown Manhattan at ColumbiaDoctors on at 51 W. 51st Street between 5th & 6th, the Day Program is designed as an adjunct to ongoing private, individual treatment. It is well-suited to individuals who have had to interrupt their educational or professional pursuits because of mental illness and/or addiction. This level of care often prevents the need to abandon such pursuits completely and may preclude the need for inpatient hospitalization. Our goal is to help individuals return to work or school at their best possible level of functioning.

Unique Features

Our program is unique in a number of ways:

  1. We take care of the whole person, not just symptoms and diagnoses.
  2. Patients often receive help for multiple problems, with specialists simultaneously approaching each issue–for example, substance abuse and an eating disorder.
  3. We have a family focused program.
  4. Patients continue in outside, individual therapy with their referring clinicians.
  5. We began over 30 years ago. Our therapists are seasoned clinicians, many with decades of experience.
  6. The program is located in Columbia’s midtown multi-specialty medical office building, facilitating access to other medical specialists for overall health care.
  7. We have received generous support from individuals, foundations, and companies, whose resources enable us to provide an unusually high level of specialized expertise. Major benefactors include the Lieber family, and the Charles Engelhard Foundation.


The Day Treatment Program is a flexibly scheduled intensive group therapy program that meets Monday through Saturday. Schedules are individualized and are arranged with input from the patient, the individual therapist, and the program staff. Flexible scheduling encourages a smoother return to independent functioning since the patient is allowed to gradually reduce group involvement as he or she resumes greater responsibility and autonomy.

After admission, each patient is assigned a staff coordinator who serves as the liaison between the patient and other supports. Changes in scheduling, revision of treatment goals, and planning for discharge are addressed by the staff coordinator. Patients are required to continue in treatment with a private psychiatrist and/or therapist as clinically needed. If desired, the Day Program can arrange a referral to a Columbia-affiliated provider for private, individual care.

Evening Program

The evening components of the Columbia University Day Treatment Program are specifically geared to those individuals who have recovered sufficiently to return to their former level of functioning. Both mental heath and addictions-focused groups are available for those who have resumed schedules that preclude on-going involvement in Day Treatment. This aspect of the program plays an especially important role in providing long-term support and continuity of care.


The Day Treatment Program offers groups mornings, afternoons, and evenings, Monday through Friday, and mornings on Saturday.

Initial goals are formulated at the intake interview and evaluated periodically. The number of sessions per week and the length of stay in the program are determined in consultation with the staff, the patient, and the patient’s private individual therapist.
Evening and Saturday groups are offered for those who need to return to full-time work or school. Patients may attend both the day and evening programs.


Columbia Day Treatment Program participates in Aetna Student Health and Consolidated Health Plans, both of which insure college and graduate students.  Other patients attend on a fee for service basis.




Referrals may be made by patients, family members, therapists, or treatment facilities. Frequently, the Columbia University Day Treatment Program is recommended as part of a comprehensive discharge plan following hospitalization. To schedule an appointment, make a referral, or for further information, please call 212-326-8441.


ColumbiaDoctors - Midtown
51 West 51st Street
New York, NY 10019


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