Published on November 16, 2020

Gratiot’s Partial Program Brings 25 Years of Healing to Community

For 25 years, the Psychiatric Partial Hospitalization Program (PHP) at MidMichigan Medical Center – Gratiot has provided an intensive therapeutic outpatient day program for patients. Since opening its doors in November 1995, the program staff have helped more than 2,500 individuals and continues to serve the Central Michigan area and beyond, having served 17 counties throughout the state of Michigan. The Medical Center’s PHP program is one of only 25 in Michigan, and Gratiot is home to one of only three north of Lansing.

The program offers daily treatment for those who need something more than a weekly appointment yet do not require an inpatient stay. The team at Gratiot Psychiatric Partial Hospitalization includes Will Thomas, M.A., Michelle Lucchesi, M.A. and Louise St. John, R.N., who all work closely with local psychiatrists, therapist and primary care providers for extended patient care.

“Our team is here for those who need extra support. We help with a variety of issues including depression, anxiety, postpartum depression, grief, stress management and assertiveness, or any condition that interferes with their ability to function,” said Lucchesi. “We teach coping skills that the patient will then implement when they return to their home each evening. Then, the following day, we review how their night went utilizing the skills.”

Sessions are held Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. The patient’s day includes morning review time, education, individual and group sessions, lunch, time for breaks and meditation. Patients can utilize the program for as long as they meet criteria for this level of care. Average length of stay is seven to 10 days. Each person receives an individualized plan tailored to fit their needs.

“The longevity of the program is directly connected to its quality of service,” said Marita Hattem-Schiffman, president, MidMichigan Medical Centers in Clare, Gratiot and Mt. Pleasant. “We offer a needed service to our community and our patient’s continually give us excellent marks in our patient satisfactions scores. We are happy to be a part of people changing their lives in a positive way.”

“Our patients have been pleased with the program. Every patient completes a satisfaction survey at the end of their stay, where they consistently give praise like ‘Staff were wonderful – attentive, caring, compassionate. I would recommend this program extremely highly to anyone who might ask.’; ‘Amazing Staff . . . you MUST make this program well known!’; ‘I received more help here than I could have hoped for!’ These satisfied former patients regularly recommend us to their friends and family because they know firsthand the quality of our program,” said Lucchesi.

“Our team is grateful to the many strong partnerships we’ve developed over the years,” adds Lucchesi. “The mental health and medical professionals have been great partners who serve alongside us to care for our community.”

To help to round out the continuum of care for behavioral health, MidMichigan Health also has an integrated behavioral health therapist at the family medicine offices in Breckenridge, Gratiot and Ithaca.

With the continued support of the community, MidMichigan Medical Center – Gratiot looks forward to providing excellent behavioral health treatment for the next 25 years. The PHP program accepts voluntary self-referrals, community or physician referral. Those interested in referral information or details on insurance coverage may call the Psychiatric Partial Hospitalization program at (989) 466-3253. Those interested in more information on MidMichigan’s comprehensive behavioral health programs may visit