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FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

When you enter the second floor admission area, you will be greeted by a hospital staff member. An admissions nurse will meet with you and explain the admission process. Please be prepared to spend 30 to 60 minutes completing initial paperwork. At this time, staff will discuss which items are allowed on the unit. Patients will be seen by their psychiatrist within 24 hours of admission. Please be prepared to bring:

  • Form of ID
  • Insurance card
  • Emergency contact information
  • List of current prescription medications
  • Medical Power of Attorney or Guardianship Paperwork

Family members are welcome to visit loved ones during regularly scheduled visiting hours:

2nd Floor
Monday, Wednesday and Friday: 7:30 p.m.–8:30 p.m.

3rd Floor
Tuesday and Thursday: 8:00 p.m.–9:00 p.m.
Saturday: 7:30 p.m.–8:30 p.m.

  • Visitors: All visitors must have the patient code, check in at the reception desk, sign in at the front desk next to the nurses’ station and wear a visitor tag at all times. The signature placed in the unit sign-in book offers a helpful record of unit visitors but is also a pledge made by each visitor that they will maintain the confidentiality of every patient on the unit. Only two visitors are allowed per patient at a time, and children under 18 years of age are not allowed on the unit. Visitors may not enter patient rooms; instead, common rooms are provided for visiting. If a visitor engages in disruptive behavior or wears inappropriate attire, he or she may be asked to leave. Should your visitor not be able to make it during the designated visiting hours, special arrangements may be made.
  • Phone privileges: Phone calls can be made and received between 8:00 a.m. and 10:00 p.m. Patients may not make or receive calls during scheduled group times. Staff will be available to help patients make and receive calls, and patients must remain within sight of a staff member while using the cordless phones. Calls will be limited to 10 minutes to ensure that all patients have access to the patient phones.

Austin Lakes Hospital’s inpatient care operates on a therapeutic community model. This model emphasizes the need for each individual to take responsibility for their own behavior and to accept the positive and negative consequences of their choices.

Inpatient theapeutic treatments include:

Individual Therapy: The psychiatrist will supervise each patient’s care and see the patient in individual sessions at least six days per week. Many patients will receive a recommendation for outpatient individual counseling and the patient’s social worker will assist with selecting a suitable outpatient counselor.

Case Management: A social worker will be assigned to manage each patient’s case throughout that patient’s hospitalization.

Group Therapy: Patients will be assigned to a therapy group based on the types of issues that brought the patient to the program. Types of group therapy include cognitive behavior, interpersonal relationships, coping skills, assertiveness, anger management and psychoeducation.

Family Therapy: A structured family meeting will be arranged if the patient and treatment team determine that a family meeting would have therapeutic benefit.
Therapeutic Recreation Group: Recreation therapy utilizes various activities as a form of active treatment to promote the improvement of a patient’s health and well-being, thus enhancing a patient’s quality of life and productivity. Therapeutic Recreation interventions include self expression, stress management, problem solving, resource education, social skills, journaling and leisure/recreation skills.

Psycho-Education Group: Provides patients with valuable information and education regarding diagnosis, medication stabilization, wellness and behavior management techniques.

Spiritual Care: Many patients turn to spiritual resources during illness and benefit from spiritual counseling during their hospitalization. Our Chaplain is trained to encourage beneficial spiritual coping processes and help patients and families draw upon their spiritual and religious resources to more effectively manage difficult emotions.

Pet Therapy: Patients may have the opportunity to interact with a trained pet therapy dog and therapist.

Healing Arts techniques such as Yoga and Tai Chi

Medicare and other private insurers may provide reimbursement for our services. Austin Lakes Hospital is contracted for services with most major insurance companies. To speak with a financial counselor, please contact our admissions line at 512-544-5253..

Austin Lakes Hospital treats patients with mild to moderate dementia who are still able to benefit from active treatment and group therapy. Our admissions staff will help families assess a patient’s level of participation.

A guardian may sign a patient into treatment when the patient meets criteria for commitment according to county guidelines. However, patients are only eligible to stay under guardianship provision for 24 hours. After 24 hours, our staff will file for a 72-hour commitment at the Travis County Courthouse. This allows the patient to stay in the hospital and receive needed care.
A Medical Power of Attorney does not allow a friend or family member to sign a patient into services. An MPOA is helpful when patients refuse medication. The MPOA allows us to administer medication to the patient.

We’re Here to Help

Talking with one of our mental health professionals could help answer your questions and identify how we may be able to help you or your loved one. We offer no-cost, confidential assessments 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Call 512-544-5253. If you are currently experiencing an emergency, please dial 911 or go to the nearest emergency room.