Child Psychologists at Kaiser

Parent Q&A

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  • Hi BPN. It's been a long and windy road but Kaiser finally approved a referral for a psychologist for my nine year old son. He's suffering from severe general anxiety, fear of being alone, etc. He is also _extremely_ hard on himself: if he messes up something he'll turn his frustration and anger inwards (hits himself, says he's a terrible person). I know Kaiser's therapists can be hit or miss, so I'd appreciate a recommendation (or three!) if you have one. I'm particularly interested in a therapist with experience with CBT (cognitive behavior therapy) or similar modalities that offer both near- and longer-term practical support and assistance. Many thanks for any thoughts you can share!  

    Doctor Altermann at KP Richmond is by far the most sensitive, experienced pediatric psychologist that we have seen, and we have seen a lot.

    Carrie Littell in Oakland is wonderful. Wishing you and your child much luck and success.

    Dr. Alex Klein in Oakland is wonderful.

    We've seen Dr. Shaffer at Kaiser Richmond for a simlair problem.  Unfortunately, we only saw her once before shelter in place started and I've had a few phone check ins since, but I liked her.

I do not know for certain that this doctor has extra expertise in helping children cope with incarcerated family members, but he is definitely worth checking into: Daniel Alterman at Richmond Kaiser.

My experience with him came in the form of a parenting class which I deeply enjoyed. I am planning to set up appointments with him for my 6 year old daughter for anxiety as well. He is truly an empathetic human with deep understanding of children and I really trust his approach.

Archived Q&A and Reviews




Kaiser Child Psychologist for 6 year old

Oct 2010

Does anyone have any recent recommendations for a Kaiser (prefer Richmond, but Oakland is fine, too) child psychologist? I don't think we need someone w/ a specialty, but my 6 year old daughter is pretty shy so we would need someone who could listen to parent accounts and perhaps gently work w/ her to crack her shell and find out what's going on w/ her. She has a lot of fears that are really adversely affecting her/our lives. I suspect that she may also have some OCD tendencies, but I'm not sure. Someone w/ experience in that arena might be handy. Thanks for any recs!! Anon

Our seven year old daughter sees Dr. Mary Haake (the worry doctor)at Oakland Kaiser. I highly recomend her. She makes her own appointments 510-752-1448. anon

We saw Dr. Mayfield, a child psychologist at Kaiser Oakland. We only saw her twice, about a complicated issue at school, but we found her to be very insightful. She immediately zoomed in to the relevant bits, and was able to get the big picture based on just a couple of hours of conversation with us parents and our child. She was very supportive and kind. anon

Another endorsement for Dr. Mary Haake at kaiser Oakland. She's got a lengthy career of working with kids with all sorts of problems - from the typical issues to the more complex. Our neighbor's kid benefitted enormously from working with her. Harriet

Child psychologist at Kaiser for 4 y.o. boy

Sept 2005

Can anyone recommend an excellent child psychologist at Kaiser Richmond? My almost 4 y.o. son is having extreme tantrums, lots of defiance and anger, etc. It may not be at a ''clinical'' level--I just don't know--but our family needs help regardless because it is affecting us all. I checked the website and recommendations are mostly for Kaiser Oakland. Thanks. Anon.

Several years ago when I went through a divorce, at the recommendation of my mediator I put my daughter into counseling at Kaiser. She was in kindergarten at the time and was very angry and acted out quite a bit. We found Dr. Dan Alterman, who is a very kind and soft spoken doctor. He totally saved our daughter and turned her around. He spent several sessions talking to her to find out how she felt in addition to play therapy and bringing in a graduate student to do some IQ testing (which is not standard, but he went above and beyond). He even went so far as to give her his card with his direct telephone number and told her to call him if she ever needed to talk outside of her sessions. She still keeps this close to this day. After several sessions, he even agreed to have a session with both her father and I to discuss strategies to help her.

She later attended a group anger management session that Kaiser offers that helps teach children how to identify their feelings and frustrations and appropriate ways to deal with anger and other emotions.

It's been a long journey and I'm not saying it's going to be easy because I've found that we never truly find out what one particular thing set her off, but at least she has strategies to help her cope and communicate her feelings. Also, find other parents that are going through the same thing. It helps to talk to someone who knows what you are going through and for the kids to have play dates because they will tell their peers more than they will tell an adult and they don't feel so alone. Good luck. celia

Developmental Psych. for 6YO ADHD?

Jan 2005

Hi. I'm new to Kaiser and need to find a good developmental psychologist/evaluator to assess my 6 year old son who is having behavioral problems, mostly with self-control, and home and at school. Has anyone been through this process at Kaiser Richmond and if so would you recommend the people you worked with there? Thanks so much. concerned mom

There is a very popular ADHD class at Kaiser Richmond taught by Rona Renner - see BPN reviews for more info.

We are working with Dr. Purvey at Kaiser Richmond for my nearly- 5 year old son, who has been acting out at daycare - expelled from two programs last year. Our issue doesn't seem to be ADHD, but I can tell you that they will ask you to attend an orientation meeting which is the all-purpose gateway to care. (Friday mornings, call to register). During that initial meeting they do an assessment with the children older than 5 in a separate room, and then each family group has the opportunity to meet with a doctor to discuss the situation. I have been pretty happy with their approach, which begins with looking at the home environment and family dynamic before jumping to a 'label' diagnosis. Good luck with your son.