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What I’ve Learned in My First 6 Months at The Dorm: Part III – Leading Through Research 

Est. reading time: 3 mins
Posted Under: Company, For Families, Insights

Clinically Reviewed by: Amanda Fialk, PhD, LCSW, LICSW


By Tere Snodgrass, Director of Admissions & Referral Experience

In this third installment of my series on my first 6 months at The Dorm, I look forward to sharing details about The Dorm’s unwavering commitment to evidence-based client care that is grounded in years of robust outcomes research. 

A Gold Standard Approach

What Sets Research at The Dorm Apart:

  • Institutional Third-party Review & Oversight: The Dorm’s multi-year Outcomes Study is approved and overseen by the Institutional Review Board (IRB) at Yale to ensure that rigorous ethical and methodological standards are met. 
  • Empirically-Valid and Reliable Assessment Measures: Ensuring the accuracy of results and the ability to evaluate key metrics over an extended period of time is paramount. Measurement devices at The Dorm are selected based on gold standards in research design. 
  • Sample Size: Ensuring adequate sample size is extremely important for being able to run statistical tests with power and accuracy.  At The Dorm, hundreds of evaluated data points have been collected for over three years to ensure robust samples across varied assessment metrics.
  • Published & Presented: Outcomes have been published and presented as research posters at national conferences across the country, including at this year’s American Psychological Association (APA). 

Clients Experience Long-term, Sustained Outcomes

As an industry, we know that a primary concern for families is the sustainability of their child’s symptom improvements after treatment is complete. At The Dorm, it’s a point of pride that treatment outcomes and clinical gains are consistently sustained.

Long-Term PTSD Symptom Reduction

Clients experience a 36% decrease in Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) symptoms over 12 months at The Dorm’s IOP program. 

This is sustained once they become independent alumni. 

Expertise & Success Treating High-acuity Client

It can be difficult to find effective intensive outpatient care with teams capable of supporting clients with severe symptomatology.  I have always remarked how The Dorm was able to provide exceptionally comprehensive care for clients with clinical severe presentations, and the outcomes substantiate this.

Acuity at Admission

Clients at The Dorm present with higher symptom acuity (severe) at admission than comparable industry programs (moderate). 

Symptom Improvement:

  • 78% decrease in psychiatric emergencies vs prior to admission
  • 88% reduction in symptoms related to psychosis such as comments from others 
  • 79% reduction in eating disorder symptoms such as dietary rules, food avoidance, and overeating due to limited food intake

Keeping a Pulse on Client Satisfaction

Beyond research outcomes, satisfaction surveys are integral to The Dorm’s data-driven process, ensuring that they have a continual pulse on the community’s experience of care. Quarterly, surveys are sent to clients, families, referral sources, and employees, which allows leadership to gain valuable insights. They genuinely value all stakeholder perspectives and are committed to listening to what is being said. Meetings are held to discuss the findings, helping Senior Directors make informed choices about any adjustments or new service offerings. This ensures they stay in tune with clients’ needs and continue supporting employees effectively. It’s an inspiring process to behold. 

To learn more about The Dorm’s research including our latest findings about the importance of in-person treatment for young adult IOP care, please visit 

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I look forward to sharing more insights soon in my final post on The Dorm’s forward-thinking leadership culture. I’m always available to answer questions or provide more information about our community – please contact me at

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