A behavioral health unit in Bastrop is helping to compassionately stabilize children and adolescents, ages 5 to 17, who suffer from mental illnesses or addictive disorders.

Cypress Grove Behavioral Health, formerly Liberty Healthcare, has a 60-bed acute unit that is dedicated to children and adolescents, said CEO Bret Moon.

"Our patients come from emergency commitments and volunteers," he said. "While they are with us our goal is to stabilize them enough so they can receive outpatient care. Our staff is fully-trained on how to deal with children who have suffered trauma. Most of our patients have suffered some sort of abuse or neglect in the home setting, and that is trauma. It is trauma to the soul and to the mental health."

Moon said the short-term unit has a team of board certified professionals who work together to personalize a plan to fit each client's needs.

Not only does the unit have inpatient help for children and adolescents, they also have an intensive outpatient program for the elderly, Moon said.

"We provide transportation and lunch to IOP patients," he said. "We offer coping skills, therapeutic activities and help them to build new relationships and find new purpose."

The IOP patients are medicare eligible patients who mainly come from nursing homes, he said.

Moon said he hopes to soon provide additional services, such as IOP after school, for school-aged children as well.

"We look forward to providing additional services in the future to our youth," he said. "We would like to have IOP services one day for children and adolescents."

Moon said it is hard to really see success and progress in only five to seven days, but believes if the unit could eventually begin IOP for the youth that much more success would be seen among them.

"First we will perfect what we do now, and then we can build on that," he said.