The Institute of Living’s model of care is derived from a longstanding humanistic tradition and a rigorous commitment to scientific advances.

Best Practices: Model of CareTreatment at the Institute of Living is based on respect for the dignity and individuality of each patient. This principle is embodied in the therapeutic connections between patients and staff working together to achieve the healthiest results. Such collaboration is guided and sustained by the “best practices” of the Institute. These practices have been developed from many sources including clinical research, evidenced based outcome studies, advances in psychopharmacology, and patient input. They are shaped by Hartford Hospital’s core values of integrity, caring, excellence and safety.

Common to all of the best practices is the belief that recovery is a process centered on the whole person and his/her goals, rights and responsibilities. Each individual’s potential for restoration is engaged through participation in the treatment process. The journey to wellness is a unique function of autonomy, self determination, and available resources The expertise and compassion of the staff translates best practices into healing encounters.

Many of these practices evolved from the philosophical framework of “Moral Treatment.” Moral Treatment was an approach to mental illness based on humane care and the recognition that the signs and symptoms of mental disorders reflected illness. The Institute of Living, established in 1822, embraced this approach to caring for the mentally ill. By involving these individuals in therapeutic settings, they were treated in a dignified and humane manner. The approach minimized the use of restraints and seclusion and maximized medical, psychological, social, occupational, and spiritual modalities.

Modern Moral Treatment is reflected in the “Best Practices” chosen by the Institute of Living to shape our model of care. These practices are used as a guide to establish the best quality of care possible for our patients and families. Information gathered from our patients and their families, as well as staff recommendations through a continuous improvement process, known as “How Hartford Hospital Works” (H3W), is instrumental to the development, implementation and refinement of these practices. This framework supports provision of the highest quality of care. This approach continuously highlights the importance of involving patients in their care, respecting individual dignity and focusing on the person.

Whether used alone or together, these practices embody the essence of our treatment approach. They assist the staff to carry forth the mission of the Institute of Living.

The Institute of Living Best Practices Model of Care includes the following specific, programmatic interventions:

  • Milieu Therapy
  • Suicide Assessment, Evaluation and Triage
  • Risking Connections
  • Recovery Model
  • Sensory Modulation Techniques
  • Psychopharmacological Model, i.e., rapid medication response protocol
  • Assessing Violence Early, Broset Violence Checklist