Virtual treatment available: DMA outpatient programs can also be accessed via online telehealth services.
Healing Primary Mental Health Disorder at Pacific Place
Pacific Place is a 16-bed, all-gender facility in Long Beach, California. This center specializes in treating young people struggling with mental health issues. The patients are housed in separate wings based on the gender that they identify with in a safe and supportive atmosphere where they can focus on themselves. Our ESTEEM System™ provides adolescent patients with individualized care to help them develop the skills and confidence they need to create the life they want. Along with utilizing traditional talk therapy, such as cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and dialectical behavior therapy (DBT), patients are also immersed in a number of creative arts therapies such as:
- Art therapy
- Music therapy
- Psychodrama therapy
- Holistic therapy
- Sound bath therapy (currently halted until COVID-19 restrictions are fully lifted)
When not in therapy, patients have access to a basketball half-court, spacious outdoor area, ping-pong table and supervised field trips.
Involving Family from the Start
When one member of the family struggles with a mental health disorder, the entire family feels it. That’s why family and/or the support system of a patient is involved throughout the duration of treatment. Family programming – which includes online or in-person family sessions with the patient, multi-family groups and visitations on weekends – supports family growth and reconciliation.
Adventure Therapy for the Soul
Our center works with Serene Waters Adventure Therapy to incorporate experiential therapy into our program’s treatment plan. Patients engage in mindfulness activities, have meaningful conversations with the group facilitator and participate in an experiential activity such as surfing or hiking. The group facilitator will design a theme for that activity and then discuss this with the patients prior to the activity and then again after the activity during the debrief. Patients have reported this as a helpful part of their overall recovery. The benefits that patients have gained from adventure therapy include learning a new positive activity that they want to engage in for the future, learning a new way to think about their recovery or struggles, and pushing themselves in a physically and emotionally uncomfortable way that made them feel more confident in themselves.
Therapy is at the forefront of what we do but that doesn’t mean education takes a backseat. At Pacific Place, each patient has 20 hours per week dedicated to schoolwork. Our educational liaison provides supervision and support to help patients focus on their studies. Even if a patient needs a lot of catching up to do, the school support program aims to get them back on track and build confidence along the way.
Insurances we accept at this location include but are not limited to Kaiser, Humana, Cigna and Unicare. Please remember that the insurances we accept change frequently. Our insurance team will verify your coverage.
MEET THE TEAM
Evan Sahn, AMFT
Evan has a master’s in counseling from Palo Alto University. He has served in clinical and leadership roles in residential and outpatient settings. He has specialties in domestic violence and substance abuse. Evan has received training in dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT) which he is integrating into Downey’s program through program development, staff training and direct treatment of his patients. He believes in a values-based approach and utilizes cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT) and acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) techniques with his patients. Evan also believes that supporting parents through skills training and education gives children their best opportunity to thrive.
Lisa Arndt, LMFT
Lisa Arndt earned her bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of California at Santa Cruz and went on to earn her master’s degree in clinical psychology from Antioch University. In addition, Lisa has been involved in creative ventures, including recording CDs and playing live music as well as writing and directing small theater projects. Lisa has previously worked at UCLA’s Neuropsychiatric Institute, St. John’s Hospital and the Eating Disorder Center of California. Then, following her work as an eating disorder counselor at Rader Programs for 3 years, Lisa began working at Center for Discovery in 1999, as a part of the initial treatment team hired to establish Center for Discovery’s Eating Disorder Program. Lisa has worked as a lead counselor, group therapist and as a primary therapist at Discovery (working at the Lakewood, Downey and Whittier facilities). Lisa also authored and operated a popular website, providing the public with education regarding eating disorders for nine years. Lisa has been dedicated to helping adolescents and their families find a happier, healthier life at Discovery for over a decade as a loyal and passionate employee. Lisa has also helped trained other staff members, and has spoken at schools and professional meetings. Lisa was a part of a People Magazine article regarding eating disorders, and was also featured on Dateline NBC regarding her work. In addition, Lisa has appeared on the television program Extra, on the Maureen O’Boyle Show, on the John Bradshaw show, and twice on the Leeza Gibbons Show. Lisa was given an award for her dedication to troubled youth in 2002. For the last few years, Lisa has been working at Discovery’s Pacific Place facility with the Co-Occurring program (substance abuse and mental health). Lisa earned her license in Marriage and Family Therapy in 2009 and became a Clinical Supervisor in 2012, and now also supervises therapy interns at Discovery. Lisa is passionate and dedicated to helping troubled youth, and thoroughly enjoys working with the treatment team and the clients at Discovery Mood and Anxiety Program.
Chris has been with Discovery since 2021 and has a wide variety of professional experience that led him to thrive here. Over the past two years he has been working on his clinical hours to become a licensed marriage, family and child therapist. Much of his work has been focused on alcohol and drug rehabilitation, including a six-bed residential facility for youths with substance use and mental health disorders. He has also worked with probationary children with DMHS and the California Probation Department. Chris earned his Master of Science degree in counseling from The University of Phoenix in 2017 and previously completed his bachelor’s in English at the University of Los Angeles, Verne. This degree was beneficial when building a strong rapport while teaching students in the Los Angeles and Pasadena unified school districts. Working with adolescents to improve their grammar skills prepared Chris to be attentive, listen effectively and clearly communicate as a therapist. It is his hope to provide patients with insight that is forthright and genuine. He would like to create a culture of acceptance that allows patients a space to experience what they need to heal. His motto is a quote by Alfred Adler: “We are not determined by our experiences, but are self-determined by the meaning we give to them.”
Elizabeth began working with Discovery Mood & Anxiety Program in March of 2020. She has worked in mental health for almost five years with her primary focus being mood disorders in adolescents.
Elizabeth began her education getting licensed as an emergency medical technician and then transferred to California State University, Sacramento. She completed her bachelor’s in psychology with a minor in both child development and counseling. Elizabeth achieved an additional associate’s degree in 2020 for social work and in spring of 2021 completed an associate’s in drug studies and a certificate in human services.
As an undergraduate, Elizabeth worked as a facility manager for adolescents with foster youth or probation backgrounds. After completing her bachelor’s degree, she returned to Los Angeles and began working with DMAP at Downey as a counselor. During her recent studies, Elizabeth also interned at DMAP’s Pacific Place and Atlantic locations to train in substance use disorders co-occurring with mental health disorders. Elizabeth additionally has completed continuing education in post-traumatic stress disorder, borderline personality disorder, trauma-informed care and sex trafficking and exploitation.
Elizabeth has a passion for working with adolescents struggling with mental health and is dedicated to helping them grow and discover themselves. Her goal is to go back to school to obtain a master’s in social work and continue to support various roles and patients within DMAP throughout her career.
Jordan Stamps, ACSW
Jordan received her MSW from University of Southern California. She has provided clinical services for persistently and severely mentally ill and substance abuse in outpatient and residential settings. Jordan is provisionally certified in cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and has received training in dialectical behavior therapy (DBT), acceptance & commitment therapy (ACT) and prolonged exposure therapy. Jordan believes in a patient-centered and systems theory approach which can positively benefit those to better understand how the interaction of self and their world impacts established and ongoing development.
Kellsie earned her bachelor’s degree in psychology & social behavior from the University of California, Irvine and went on to pursue her master’s degree in social work from University of Southern California. Throughout the past 10 years, Kellsie has worked in variety of settings including schools, inpatient/outpatient behavioral health, youth shelters, group homes and residential, with both adults and kids alike. Kellsie has a passion for working with those who suffer from traumatic pasts and has received training in trauma-focused cognitive behavioral therapy, as well as in the Attachment, Regulation and Competency (ARC) Framework. Additionally, Kellsie has co-facilitated “Word on the Street” curriculum to assist in the prevention of Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children (CSEC). Kellsie is passionate and dedicated to helping individuals identify, understand and thrive from their traumatic stories, noting that with the right support, these individuals can overcome adversity and live happy, healthy and functional lives.
Jocelyn Neri-Romero has spent the majority of life in Orange County, completing a bachelor’s degree in Human Services. Jocelyn has extensive experience working with adolescents in residential settings. Jocelyn enjoys working with youth, supporting their growth, building interpersonal skills, and promoting a positive academic focus. Jocelyn hopes to continue this work with the professional goal of obtaining a Master of Social Work degree.
A favorite quote of Jocelyns from Finding Nemo’s, Dory: “Just keep swimming, just keep swimming.”
Dr. Michael Louie
Dr. Louie received his medical degree from Western University of Health Sciences and went on to complete his psychiatry residency training at Loma Linda University. He is well-versed in treating adult, child and adolescent and geriatric patients. Dr. Louie has an understanding and ability to treat a range of disorders including depression, anxiety, eating disorders, addiction and psychosis.
Here’s What Patients Say After Completing Treatment*
- 97% feel hopeful about their future*
- 95% believe they can handle life after treatment*
- 99% know what helps them get better*
“This place truly saved my life. I’ve been to another treatment center before and it doesn’t compare. I have truly made so many positive changes to myself, my relationships and my lifestyle because of this place.” – Averi A., former patient at DMA Pacific Place
On the eve before my son’s discharge, I am tear-filled knowing how far my son has come in his health. I am ever so grateful.” – Michele C., parent of DMA Pacific Place alumni
“This place saved my life. It’s an amazing facility and I’m so thankful for it.” – Brent B., former patient at DMA Pacific Place
*Percentage includes adult and adolescent patients who admitted to the Discovery Mood & Anxiety Program in 2021 (between 1/1/21 and 12/31/21) and completed the Recovery Assessment Scale (RAS) (N = 2,278). Average length of stay is 34.2 days for those who completed treatment (did not discharge to a higher level of care, due to insurance, against treatment advice, transfer or administratively).