Psychologist/Psychiatrist for teen with suicidal ideation

We are looking for a psychologist or psychiatrist focused on adolescents dealing with suicidal ideation, psychosis, depression, anger, hurting self and others. Ideally, they are able to meet in-person (not virtual), and are on Kaiser—but willing to pay out of pocket too. The teen lives in the East Bay but open to locations as we are finding it very difficult to find anyone willing to take new patients immediately.  The teen has already called suicide hotlines, gone to the ER, etc. We just really need to find them ongoing help. Thank you.

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I am so sorry, and understand your panic. I had a very good experience with Dr Yuriy Dobry with my daughter. He is in Burlingame so a bit of a drive, but he was worth it. Google him and give his office a call. A very nice man who knows what he is doing. I wish you all the best.

I am just so sorry that you're going through this. I don't know anyone, but I really feel for you.

My daughter who suffers from clinical depression has seen two excellent psychiatrists and is currently working with an NP from Pacific Coast Psychiatric Associates ( They’re currently taking new patients and I’ve been very impressed with each doctor that my daughter’s seen from PCPA. 
It’s been over 10 years assuring my daughter has the best care team and it’s paying off! I’m unaware if they also provide psychologists for new patients also seeing a physiatrist. It’s harder work finding the ideal psychologist because they must be a great match for the patient since they monitor how well the medication(s) work for the patient.  Unfortunately, the psychologist she’s currently working with in Oakland is not currently taking new patients. 

Best of luck to you. It’s a heartbreaking journey finding the care team that’ll be best for your child. Sorry I don’t have any personal experience with the Kaiser system

If you are with Kaiser you should call them. They will set up an intake session with a psychiatrist. 

Sorry I can't help you with Kaiser. If they can't provide you with a therapist, then you can request that they find you one from one of their affiliate lists. It used to be Beacon or Magellan. Maybe you could try Elise Geltman whose office is right near Kaiser in Oakland--she used to be a Magellan provider, i think. Or you could try A Step Forward, a practice located in Concord that used to have an office in El Cerrito right by the BART STATION. Anna Weisberg is the Clinical Director: her practice is full right now. We thought she was great-- maybe a little more trauma focused than what you seem to be seeking--but capable of handling the challenges you've listed nonetheless. I know they just brought on some new clinicians who seem to have availability. If you are interested, call the main number 925-685-9670 x101 and to DIana Jones, their office manager. , will take initial information to get things started. Here's the website:

Also, you may already have gone to a Willows in the Wind meeting, but that can be both a comfort and a good source of resources for parents. They are a little more residential treatment focused than you need, but parents are encouraged to come and ask for help even if they are keeping their child in their home community. They have meetings in both Oakland and San Rafael--virtual right now:

Good luck and hang in there...I'm with you in spirit...and am hoping that things ease up. It takes time, but healing can happen. 

A parent who has been there. - S

Based on the symptoms you described, it sounds like your teen really needs a higher level of care than basic outpatient therapy and psychiatry. It is likely they will require a higher level of care like an intensive outpatient (IOP) or partial hospitalization program (PHP). In Kaiser, you will need to advocate strongly - make sure you document your teen’s symptoms and risk factors, especially the fact that they are suicidal and self harming, and share that documentation (eg, send over email) with the mental health care team. Kaiser does have PHP and IOP programs. You will need to strongly advocate for mental health services within Kaiser and do not let them off the hook. They need to be taking this situation very, very seriously.

My friend's child had a serious mental health emergency and got an appointment with a psychiatrist right away at Kaiser.  I would call and tell the details and that your child is not safe and needs an appointment urgently.  Then ask to talk to a supervisor if you don't an appointment.  I don't think a psychologist is the first step.  I think a psychiatrist can make an assessment and help with a plan to care for your child.

If you are with Kaiser, insist on residential care if the situation is urgent and beyond ability to handle/ care. Kaiser must provide residential care for patients in CA for serious mental illness such as severe depression and psychosis —it’s been settled by legal action. I know, I was a co-plaintiff with my son in a class action suit against Northern and Southern KP. It’s expensive and they don’t have facilities so they have to contact out but they must do it under law— MHPA. Tell them you believe you child needs residential treatment and you want an evaluation. There are specific measures KP must follow. The case was Dion v KFHP and it mandates residential treatment when medically necessary. 

By now your situation is hopefully resolved. I just want to mention for others going through something similar, I agree that outpatient therapy may not be enough of an intervention for  someone struggling that acutely. It can take time to get approval for inpatient treatment. Important to know, a way around this is to go through the emergency room. If suicidal ideations and/or potential self harm is involved, they will very likely transfer to psych without having to wait more than a day or two.