Intensive outpatient program

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An intensive outpatient program (IOP) is a kind of treatment service and support program used primarily to treat eating disorders, bipolar disorder (including mania; and for types I and II), unipolar depression, self harm and chemical dependency that does not rely on detoxification. IOP operates on a small scale and does not require the intensive residential or partial day services typically offered by the larger, more comprehensive treatment facilities.[1]

The typical IOP program offers group therapy and generally facilitates 6-30 hours a week of programming for addiction treatment.[2] IOP allows the individual to be able to participate in their daily affairs, such as work, and then participate in treatment at an appropriate facility in the morning or at the end of the day. With an IOP, classes, sessions, meetings, and workshops are scheduled throughout the day, and individuals are expected to adhere to the strict structure of the program.

The typical IOP program encourages active participation in 12-step programs in addition to the IOP participation. IOP can be more effective than individual therapy for chemical dependency.

IOP is also used by some HMOs as transitional treatment for patients just released from treatment in a psychiatric ward.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Smith, George; Ruiz-Sancho, Ana; Gunderson, John (Apr 2001). "An intensive outpatient program for patients with borderline personality disorder". Psychiatric Services. 52 (4): 532–533. doi:10.1176/ PMID 11274503.
  2. ^ "Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP)". Blvd Centers. Retrieved 12 December 2018.