The Austen Riggs Center is an open psychiatric hospital and treatment program that promotes resilience and self-direction in adults (18+) with complex psychiatric problems. We specialize in the long-term treatment of psychiatric disorders with intensive psychodynamic psychotherapy and a full range of psychiatric services, offered in a completely voluntary continuum of care that includes inpatient, residential, and day treatment programs.
In addition, many people come to Riggs with histories of substance use disorders or eating disorders, and as long as the person is medically stable and not actively abusing substances, our treatment can be helpful for these conditions as well.
Treating the Individual in Context
We treat the individual, not the diagnosis. Diagnostic labels cannot capture the essence of an individual’s struggles or strengths, and they often obscure what people have in common. Many of our patients have multiple diagnoses, and many have been identified as “treatment resistant” in the past. Often they seek psychiatric treatment at Riggs because they need a different approach, and many opt to stay in our long-term residential treatment program following an initial evaluation and treatment period.
All patients have intensive psychodynamic psychotherapy four times a week with a psychiatrist or clinical psychologist. The goal is to help the person expand their capacity for work, play, and love by fostering improved self-esteem and resilience, and by helping them acknowledge and come to terms with whatever has previously blocked their development.
Recognizing the importance of the social context, we offer in-depth family evaluation, support for family members, and family therapy, as well as a robust Therapeutic Community Program in which patients can develop supportive peer relationships and learn about themselves with others. We offer opportunities for participation in patient government, in social and recreational activities, in reflective process groups, and in health and wellness activities such as meditation and yoga.
Education and Training
The Erikson Institute for Education and Research of the Austen Riggs Center studies individuals in their social contexts through research, training, education, and outreach programs in the local community and beyond. Part of that offering includes an Adult Psychoanalytic Training Program and Fellowship in Hospital-Based Psychotherapy for psychiatrists and psychologists. The program takes a systems perspective, emphasizing cultural and familial contexts, as well as individual development across the lifespan.
Location, Licensure, and Accreditation
Located in the small New England town of Stockbridge, MA, three hours from New York City, two hours from Boston, and one hour from Albany, NY, the Austen Riggs Center is fully licensed by the Massachusetts Department of Health and accredited by the Joint Commission.
The Austen Riggs Center is consistently ranked a U.S. News & World Report “Best Hospital” in Psychiatry. We encourage you to contact us or call  517.4447 if you or someone you know could benefit from our unique treatment model.Visit the Austen Riggs Website