Intensive OCD and Anxiety Outpatient Program

Intensive OCD and Anxiety Treatment

The OCD and Anxiety Disorders Intensive Outpatient Program is a specialized program designed to help adults experiencing persistent obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), intense fears (phobias), panic disorder, health anxiety (hypochondriasis), and social anxiety.

Built upon a cognitive behavioral therapy called exposure and response prevention (ERP) or prolonged exposure, the program is geared towards people who have not responded to traditional outpatient treatment and uses the treatment of choice for these conditions. Treatment takes place Monday through Thursday from 1:45p.m. to 5:00 p.m., with the average length of stay being six to eight-weeks. The program includes individual therapy twice a week, daily group therapy, as well as home-based ERP, family consultations, and expert psychiatric medication consultation.

Contact Information:

OCD and Anxiety Disorders Intensive Outpatient Program
Butler Hospital
345 Blackstone Boulevard
Providence, RI 02906
P: 1 (844) 401-0111
F: (401) 455-6481

Program Registration

The program requires a referral from an outpatient provider. Please complete the referral form and fax to (401) 455-6481.

Provider Referral Form

Learn More About the Program

In the OCD and Anxiety Disorders Intensive Outpatient Program, the primary treatment approach is ERP, a behavioral therapy that involves learning how to face your fears and cope with distress. Exposure exercises are planned and implemented systematically and patients are encouraged to challenge themselves in order to reach their goals.

On the first day, a therapist with expertise in ERP will meet individually with you to complete an evaluation. The therapist will discuss treatment options and begin to design an individualized treatment plan. You will also be asked to complete some questionnaires and attend a group therapy session.

Typically, during the first week the focus is on gathering information that will help you and your clinical care team understand your challenges and develop a treatment plan. A psychiatrist with specialized training in prescribing medication for OCD and anxiety disorders will meet with you to discuss medication options. Your therapist will also encourage you to schedule a consultation session with a family member or support person to enhance your treatment plan.

During the first few weeks, the staff will help you practice exposure exercises in individual or group formats, in the office or in another setting like the cafeteria or outdoors. Homework exercises are a key component of the program and you will be asked to practice the exercises daily on your own. The groups are designed to help you learn to practice the exposure exercises on your own, staying motivated, and talking to others who are also suffering from similar issues.

During the final weeks of the program, staff will help you to focus on your most challenging exercises and build support outside of the program in the form of outpatient providers and family and friends. Family and treatment provider consultations will be encouraged as well as a concrete plan for transitioning to outpatient therapy. A plan will be developed to maximize progress once you leave the program.

Program Registration

To start the referral process, providers are asked to complete a Referral Form. If you do not have an outpatient provider, please call the Intake Department to complete a telephone screening.

Program Details

What is a typical day like?
  • Check-in
  • Homework review
  • Exposure therapy group*
  • Homework planning group
  • Check-out
What should I bring with me?
  • Picture identification
  • Insurance card
  • List of current medications
  • Name and contact information for current outpatient providers
  • We have a café that sells beverages and snacks, but you may also bring snacks from home

*Individual therapy sessions take place two days per week during this time. Medication sessions are scheduled as needed during program time or breaks.

Family Involvement
The involvement of a family member or support person is important to your success. We encourage you to schedule at least one session that includes someone supportive in your life. No contact will be made with your family or others without your consent, except in the case of an emergency.
What happens when I’m ready to leave the program?
The clinical staff will coordinate care with your outpatient providers as well as help you come up with a plan to continue to make progress once you leave with the support of family, friends and your outpatient provider.

Meet the Team

Kimberley L. Chiappone, MD

Program Chief for OCD/ Anxiety Disorders - After completing her medical degree at SUNY Buffalo’s School of Medicine, Dr. Chiappone completed her General Psychiatry residency through Brown University where she became particularly interested in working with patients struggling with Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder. She is now the psychiatrist for the Obsessive Compulsive Disorder/Anxiety Disorder Intensive Outpatient Program in addition to outpatient work.

Megan L. Smith, LICSW

Program Manager -Megan is a Licensed Independent Clinical Social Worker who received her MSW from Simmons College School of Social Work in 2009 – completing internships at the Lemuel Shattuck Hospital and Massachusetts Institute of Technology. She has been a Program Therapist in the OCD & Anxiety IOP since its inception in 2017. Megan previously worked at Gateway Healthcare, holding positions as a Clinical Specialist and Team Leader for an Integrated Health Home Team, providing outpatient mental health treatment to adults with chronic and persistent mental illness.

Emily Debold, LMHC

Program Therapist - Emily received her M.A. in Clinical Counseling Psychology with a concentration in Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) from Assumption College in 2018. She completed internships in the Young Adult Partial Hospital Program at Butler and Stonehill College Counseling Services.

Aaron Kaiser, PhD

Clinical Psychologist - Dr. Kaiser graduated in 2003 from Pennsylvania State University with a B.S. in Psychology.  He went on to receive his MA (2006) and PhD (2010) in Clinical Psychology from Central Michigan University. Dr. Kaiser is presently a Clinical Psychologist in the Anxiety/OCD Outpatient Psychology Clinic and the OCD & Anxiety Intensive Outpatient Program at Butler Hospital where he treats outpatient clients and supervises the clinical work of psychology and psychiatry residents.

Elizabeth Byrnes, LMHC

Program Therapist – Lizzy received her M.S. in Counseling Psychology from Northeastern University in Boston, Massachusetts. She has a background working with children, adolescents, and adults struggling with OCD and eating disorders, and has also worked with families to help them best support their loved ones through these illnesses. She has provided care in partial hospital, intensive outpatient, and in-home settings.