Family Center Brochure

Our Family Center pamphlet is a great introduction to the center's Family Inclusive Therapy. The staff at the Family Center strongly believes that the support and health of the entire family unit are both necessary components in the successful treatment of bipolar disorder.

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How to Stay Mentally Balanced in Our Bipolar World

A Guide for People with Bipolar Disorder and Their Families

This is a great resource for anyone taking care of a loved one diagnosed with bipolar disorder. This short booklet offers separate chapters for the caregivers of bipolar children, adolescents, adults, and spouses. Learn how to identify episode triggers, read about techniques to alleviate risk, and become aquiainted with the things to watch out for both in your loved one and yourself.

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Talking to Families about Mental Illness:

What Clinicians Need to Know

Written by Dr. Igor Galynker, the Director of the Family Center, this helpful guide provides an abundance of useful information for patients, families and clinicians about how to approach bipolar disorder in the context of the family. 

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National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-TALK (8255)

A free, 24-hour hotline available to anyone in suicidal crisis or emotional distress.

Covenant House Nineline: (800) 999-9999

Covenant House Nineline is a 24-hour, toll-free crisis hotline which provides crisis intervention, referral and information services to homeless, runaway and other troubled youth and their families throughout the U.S. Trained crisis counselors are able to refer callers to help in their own communities. The Nineline also handles calls that deal with suicide, drug/alcohol abuse, and violence.

Local New York Resources

Bronx District Branch of the American Psychiatric Association
The Bronx District Branch
c/o Moritt Hock
400 Garden City Plaza, Suite 200
Garden City, NY 11530
Phone: 914-967-7065
Fax:  516-873-2010

The Society provides referrals to psychiatrists in the Bronx area and distributes information to the public on mental illness.

Bronx Psychiatric Center

1500 Waters Place
Bronx, NY 10461
Phone: (718) 931-0600
Fax: (718) 862-4879
E-Mail: Bronx Psychiatric Center

The Center has information and referrals to community mental health resources and sponsors social and recreational programs for mental health consumers and families. The Center also provides job opportunities for consumers.

Brooklyn Psychiatric Society, Inc.

Four Chimney Ct.
Brookhaven, NY 11719
Phone & Fax: (631) 286-9193

The district branch provides referrals to psychiatrists in the Brooklyn area and distributes information to the public on mental illness.

Mood Disorders Support Group
Phone: (212) 533-MDSG

The Mood Disorders Support Group (MDSG) is a non profit, self-help organization serving individuals both with depression and manic-depression (bipolar disorder), as well as their families and friends. They help people to accept and manage their illness and improve the quality of their life. They are an independent affiliate of the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance (formerly known as the National Depressive and Manic Depressive Association).

MDSG's support groups are the main reason for its existence. Also known as discussion meetings or rap sessions, they provide a friendly, safe place for the exchange of experiences and information. A typical group will meet for about an hour and a half, but there is no strict schedule and people are free to leave at any time. Reservations are not required, you can just show up. There are support groups for people with the disorder, family and friends of those with the disorder and people under 30. Meetings are held at two locations in Manhattan: Beth Israel Medical Center and St. Luke’s-Roosevelt Hospital (see website for specific instructions on finding the meeting). Support groups are lead by trained facilitators. They try to limit each group to a maximum of 12 people.

Family Support Resources

Families for Depression Awareness
Phone: (781) 890-0220
Fax: (781) 890-2411

Families for Depression Awareness (FFDA) helps families recognize and cope with depressive disorders to get people well and prevent suicides. FFDA offers brochures, educational seminars, online support groups, resources, and advocacy to support families with depression.

Families Together in New York State
Phone Number: (888) 326-8644

Families Together in New York State is a nonprofit organization that serves the families of children with special emotional, behavioral, and mental health needs. Their mission is to ensure that every family has access to needed information, support and services. They provide support, advocacy, information, technical assistance and training to families across New York State.

Peer Advocacy Groups

Compeer, Inc.
Phone Number: (800) 836-0475
Fax: (716) 325-2558

Compeer is a non-profit organization that matches community volunteers in supportive friendship and relationships with children and adults receiving mental health treatment. Consumers are referred to the program by mental health professionals. Community volunteers, who are trained and screened, visit for a minimum of one hour per week for a year and provide rehabilitative, social support, advocacy, educational and vocational mentoring, and access to community resources. On-going training, supervision and support are also provided.

Consumers Helping Others In a Caring Environment (CHOICE)
Phone: (914) 576-0173

CHOICE stands for Consumers Helping Others In a Caring Environment; the term "consumers" as well as "peer" refers to a group which shares first-hand experience of mental illness, as well as the stigmatization, major life disruptions and loss of personal autonomy which often accompanies a diagnosis.


Useful Websites

National Institute of Mental Health
Web Site:

This is a comprehensive website with information and news about bipolar disorder, signs and symptoms, treatment and service options.

NARSAD-The Brain and Behavior Research Fund

NARSAD raises money from donors around the world and invests it directly in the most promising research projects in bipolar disorder, depression, anxiety disorders, schizophrenia, and childhood disorders.

Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance

Web Site:

The DBSA is the nation’s leading patient-directed organization focusing on depression and bipolar disorder. Their website provides information about bipolar disorder and its different types, as well as links for information about bipolar disorder in children, and a link to support groups. The treatments section has great information on different treatment options and coping strategies.

For information about a DBSA support group in New York, call: (800) 826-3632, or check on the web at:

US National Institute of Health Clinical Trials
Web Site:

If you are interested in participating in research on bipolar disorder, this website provides regularly updated information about federally and privately supported clinical research in human volunteers. gives you information about a trial's purpose, who may participate, locations, and phone numbers for more details.

Web Site:

Medline compiles information from a number of sources on bipolar disorder, with recent news, as well as overviews of the illness and informative literature. Check out the Treatment, Coping and Disease Management sections - there are tons of great resources there, such as information on medications from the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), and a personal mood calendar from the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance (DBSA). Medline also provides information on childhood and adolescent bipolar disorder, as well as managing pregnancy with bipolar disorder.

National Mental Health Information Center
Web Site:

Use this database to locate mental health services in your area. This website provides extensive information on resources available in the New York metro region: use the drop-down menu to choose New York, and check out the directory of mental health services and resources, as well as suicide prevention and substance abuse programs. 

Advocacy Organizations

Mental Health Association in New York State
Toll-free: 800-766-6177 (Statewide)

Mental Health Association in New York State maintains a referral and information center and can help you locate other local chapters. These local groups have information about community services and engage in national and State level advocacy.


NAMI New York State
Toll-free: 800-950-3228 (Statewide)

The National Alliance on Mental Illness maintains a helpline for information on mental illnesses and referrals to local groups. The local self-help groups have support and advocacy components and offer education and information about community services for families and individuals.

New York Mental Health Resources

If you have any questions or complaints about any mental health services you are interested in receiving or have received, the following contacts should be able to help you.

State Mental Health Agency
Michael F. Hogan, PhD, Commissioner
Thomas Farley, M.D., M.P.H. New York City Health Commissioner
Phone: 800-597-8481 (Statewide)

For more information about admission, care, treatment, release, and patient follow-up in public or private psychiatric residential facilities, contact your State mental health agency. Spanish language assistance is available.

New York State Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services
Karin M. Carpenter--Palumbo
Phone: 1-800-522-5353

This state agency provides information about treatment and care of substance abuse disorders.

New York State Commission on Quality of Care for Persons with Disabilities
Jane G. Lynch, Chief Operating Officer
Phone: 800-624-4143 (Statewide)

Each State has a protection and advocacy agency that receives funding from the Federal Center for Mental Health Services. Agencies are mandated to protect and advocate for the rights of people with mental illnesses and to investigate reports of abuse and neglect in facilities that care for or treat individuals with mental illnesses. These facilities, which may be public or private, include hospitals, nursing homes, community facilities, board and care homes, homeless shelters, jails, and prisons. Agencies provide advocacy services or conduct investigations to address issues that arise during transportation or admission to such facilities, during residency in them, or within 90 days after discharge from them. Spanish language assistance is available.

Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS)

Phone: 800-633-4227; 410-786-3000

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, which are part of the Department of Health and Human Services, investigate some complaints about treatment facilities that receive Medicare and Medicaid funding.

New York Regional Office
Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services
26 Federal Plaza, Room 3811
New York, NY 10278-0063
Phone: 212-616-2205

The New York Regional Office (Region 2) should be your initial point of contact on any Medicare, Medicaid, or State Children’s Health Insurance Program issue in the following States: New York, New Jersey, Puerto Rico, and Virgin Islands.

Bureau of Recipient Affairs
New York State Office of Mental Health
44 Holland Avenue, Eighth Floor
Albany, NY 12229
Phone: 518-473-6579
Fax: 518-474-8998

Mental Health Empowerment Project
116 Everett Road, Suite 7
Albany, NY 12205
Phone: 518-434-1393
Toll-free: 800-643-7462

378 Violet Avenue
Poughkeepsie, NY 12601
Phone: 845-452-2728

People Inc. is a nonprofit organization that advocates for the rights and choices of people who experience psychiatric symptoms. They advocate for change that promotes recovery and independence within the mental health system and collaborate and negotiate with local service providers.

The National Mental Health Consumers' Self-Help Clearinghouse
1211 Chestnut Street, Suite 1207
Philadelphia, PA 19107
Phone: 215-751-1810
Fax: 215-636-6312
Toll-free: 800-553-4539

The National Mental Health Consumers' Self-Help Clearinghouse, funded partly by the Center for Mental Health Services, promotes and helps to develop consumer-run self-help groups across the country. Technical assistance and materials are available on such topics as organizing groups, fundraising, leadership development, incorporating, public relations, advocacy, and networking.

The National Empowerment Center
599 Canal Street
Lawrence, MA 01840
Toll-free: 800-769-3728
Fax: 978-681-6426

The National Empowerment Center is a Technical Assistance Center run by mental health consumers/survivors. The Center's mission is to carry a message of recovery, empowerment, hope and healing to people who have been diagnosed with mental illness. The organization provides referrals to consumer/survivor resources nationwide and offers technical assistance to individuals and groups involved in consumer empowerment activities. The Center distributes recovery-related publications and sponsors education and training activities.

Consumer Organization & Networking Technical Assistance Center (CONTAC)
P.O. Box 11000
Charleston, WV 25339
Phone: 888-825-TECH (8324)
Fax: 304-345-7303

The Consumer Organization & Networking Technical Assistance Center (CONTAC), funded by the Center for Mental Health Services, is a resource center for consumers/survivors and consumer-run organizations across the United States. Services and products include informational materials; on-site training and skill-building curricula; electronic and other communication capabilities; networking and customized activities promoting self-help, recovery, leadership, business management, and empowerment.