af-am-man.200.157.s-1The Penn Memory Center and the University of Pennsylvania’s Section of Geriatric Psychiatry are pleased to announce a new group for people with Mild Cognitive Impairment or very early stage dementia.

To download a one-page overview of the Psychotherapeutic Group for MCI, click here.

People with MCI may experience a complicated mix of fear, anxiety, sadness and frustration as they face new challenges with thinking, learning and remembering.

This group, which meets for one hour each week, provides a supportive and therapeutic environment for people who have been diagnosed with Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI) or very early stage dementia (such as Alzheimer’s disease).

The group is appropriate for people who may be experiencing difficulties in social settings, at work or in other areas of their life as a result of problems with memory, organizing and planning.

People with memory concerns who do not have a formal diagnosis are encouraged to speak with group facilitators to find out if this group may be appropriate for them.

Overview of the group

This group is facilitated by a clinical psychologist and other trained mental health providers and will provide a supportive and open environment in which participants can express their thoughts and feelings, as well as share coping strategies with other people who experience similar problems.

The group facilitators help participants explore the interactions between thoughts, feelings and behaviors as the underlying structure of the program is guided by principles drawn from Cognitive Behavioral Therapy.

The focus is also in large part determined by the needs of the group’s members, providing a mix of emotional coping tools to help manage stigma, shame, changes in lifestyle, and communication. Group members may also help each other cope by sharing their experiences with practical tools to help compensate for changes in memory or executive function (organization and planning).

Logistics

The group meets each Monday from 2pm-3pm at:

The Ralston House
3615 Chestnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104
Free parking is available on a first come first served basis.

Cost

This program is considered “group psychotherapy” and is covered by Medicare and many insurance companies.

The co-pay for each session will vary based on each individual’s insurance coverage. If our department does not accept your insurance you will have to pay for each session up front and out of pocket. The fee for group therapy is considerably less than that of individual or family sessions. Our staff can help you submit necessary paperwork for reimbursement.

Reimbursement is based on “medical necessity” and therefore a diagnosis will be associated with each bill. Feel free to discuss any concerns about this with group facilitator.

Participants are welcome to stay in the group as long as they are able to continue benefitting from the group.

Registration/Enrollment

Enrollment is open on an on-going basis. A minimum of 8 regularly attending participants is required, with a maximum of 20 group participants.

To register for the group, please call 215-662-4508. If you have any additional questions, please contact Melissa Livney, Psy.D. at 215-349-8209 or melissa.livney@uphs.upenn.edu.