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Pickup Family Neurosciences Institute Brings Teens Mental Health Services to Irvine

Categories: Press Room

IRVINE, Calif., September 5, 2018 --- Pickup Family Neurosciences Institute at Hoag announced today that the acclaimed ASPIRE program for teens struggling with anxiety, depression and other mental health conditions will now be offered in Irvine.

An evidence-based intensive outpatient program for teens and their families, ASPIRE (After-School Program for Interventions and Resiliency Education®) uses dialectical behavioral therapy and expressive arts to help teens develop and practice healthy behaviors and coping strategies. ASPIRE also helps teens build interpersonal relationships through educational groups, skills groups and weekly family meetings, requiring parents or guardians to participate during the course of the program.

According to the recently released 2018 OC Community Indicators Report – an annual assessment of major issues impacting the health and wellbeing of children and adults – there has been a 99% increase in major depression hospitalizations among children and youth since 2007. Major depression remains the most frequent diagnosis for a behavioral health admission for youth (0-17).

“Mental health continues to be a growing concern in our community and we are proud to expand the offerings in Irvine for teens and their families who are seeking help for depression and other mental health issues,” said Sina Safahieh, M.D., board certified in child and adolescent psychiatry and program director of ASPIRE at Hoag. “The resources we offer through ASPIRE provide teens and their families effective tools and resiliency training to manage mental health issues, and navigate future life stressors in order for them to thrive and succeed in life.”

The program is designed for youth between the ages of 13 and 17 and is held after school hours, four days a week for eight weeks. Hoag started the ASPIRE program in Newport Beach in 2016 and, thanks to the generous donor community, was able to expand the services into Irvine.

The support, early intervention tools and access to care in the ASPIRE program are designed to accompany the services of a psychiatrist board certified in working with children and adolescents, who provides assessment and diagnosis through personal sessions and leadership to the program.

ASPIRE is located at 16100 Sand Canyon Avenue in Irvine, adjacent to Hoag Hospital Irvine.

For more information, visit hoag.org/ASPIRE.


Delivering a personalized, integrated approach using best-practice guidelines, the most advanced technology, and integration of medical specialists in the most appropriate facilities, the Pickup Family Neurosciences Institute (PFNI) at Hoag provides the highest quality care for patients with brain and spine disorders including stroke, aneurysms and vascular malformations, brain tumors, epilepsy, movement disorders, memory and cognitive disorders, pain, minimally invasive spine surgery, multiple sclerosis, addiction medicine and sleep disorders, as well as the mind-body interface of behavioral health. Several of Hoag’s PFNI programs have received high acclaim, including the stroke program at Hoag, which was the first hospital in Orange County and the second in California to be named a Certified Comprehensive Stroke Center by DNV GL Healthcare. It was awarded the American Stroke Association’s Get With The Guidelines Stroke Gold Plus Performance Achievement for stroke care. And as one of the first centers in the U.S. to offer the most advanced radiosurgical treatment system available, Leksell Gamma Knife® Perfexion™, Hoag’s brain tumor program is the largest in Orange County and is also among the top volume programs in the western United States. The epilepsy program is an accredited Level 3 center. The PFNI’s memory and cognitive disorders program is nationally recognized.


Hoag is an approximately $1 billion nonprofit, regional health care delivery network in Orange County, California, that treats more than 30,000 inpatients and 425,000 outpatients annually. Hoag consists of two acute-care hospitals – Hoag Hospital Newport Beach, which opened in 1952, and Hoag Hospital Irvine, which opened in 2010 – in addition to eight health centers and 11 urgent care centers. Hoag is a designated Magnet® hospital by the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC). Hoag offers a comprehensive blend of health care services that includes five institutes providing specialized services in the following areas: cancer, heart and vascular, neurosciences, women’s health, and orthopedics through Hoag’s affiliate, Hoag Orthopedic Institute, which consists of an orthopedic hospital and two ambulatory surgical centers. In 2013, Hoag entered into an alliance with St. Joseph Health to further expand health care services in the Orange County community, known as St. Joseph Hoag Health. Hoag has been named one of the Best Regional Hospitals in the 2018 - 2019 U.S. News & World Report, andBecker’s Healthcare named Hoag as one of the 2018 “100 Great Hospitals in America” – a designation Hoag has received five times. For an unprecedented 22 years, residents of Orange County have chosen Hoag as one of the county’s best hospitals in a local newspaper survey. Visit www.hoag.org for more information.

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To download the official press release, please click here.