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Treatment Options Available at the Center

Cognitive-behavioral psychotherapy is a research based approach to mental health that primarily focuses on improving the quality of an individual's present day functioning and life satisfaction. This type of therapy is an active therapy, whereby the client and practitioner talk, act, and work together to achieve agreed upon goals for life change. Clients can expect to work actively within each session, as well as to oftentimes receive guided assignments to execute between sessions. These between-session assignments may include behavioral exercises and/or reading. Cognitive-behavioral psychotherapy highlights that it is our beliefs, interpretations, and perceptions of life events that determine our feelings, moods, and ultimately, our actions. Therefore, a universal goal of this therapy is to help people identify, understand, and modify their belief systems in order to function more effectively and happily. Additionally, cognitive-behavioral psychotherapy seeks to teach people to provide bits of therapy to themselves, and to know when they need to pursue professional "booster" sessions.

Read Description of Cognitive-Behavioral Principles for the Treatment of Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)

Individual Psychotherapy

Weekly, 45-50 minute sessions that include cognitive-behavioral interventions, such as exposure with response prevention (ERP), cognitive restructuring, relaxation training, social skills training, and stress management. Individualized home based challenges are an essential component of the therapeutic process. Typically persons have to be willing to commit a total of 15 to 20 minutes per day toward their between session therapeutic process. The exercises are generally based on a graded hierarchy from least to most challenging exposures.

Telephone and Skype Therapy

A highly effective treatment alternative for individuals living outside of the metropolitan New York area. (In recent years, Dr. Phillipson has successfully worked with clients from around the world.) This option is available for persons who do not otherwise have access to expert treatment. Approximately eight years ago, when Dr. Phillipson's first article received national distribution on treatment for the purely-obsessional client, he received numerous phone calls from persons who did not have available to them local expert assistance for their particular form of OCD. Skype is preferred for a more genuine experience.


Couples Counseling

Our more senior-level staff at the Center have experience in couples counseling, working on Communication Skills Training, Family Therapy, and Parent Effectiveness Training.

Group Psychotherapy

Weekly, 75 minute Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder groups co-led by Dr. Phillipson and graduate interns. Groups meet Tuesday evening 6:45 pm and Friday evening at 6:15 pm. There is also a group on Monday evenings at 6:45 pm lead by Dr. Rafi Kalman. Each group consists of approximately eight to twelve people, and fee for group is $45 per week. The group's specific focus involves more senior members providing newer members with support and guidance related to their own progress. The group has a behavioral component to it and generally each week home-based challenges are assigned. The group is a great opportunity for persons to establish relations with others who can appreciate the daily challenges of this potentially disabling condition.

Additionally, we offer an online video chat support group for individuals with OCD. This group is similar to our in-person groups in terms of content, focus and theoretical approach. The online group meets weekly on Thursday nights at 8pm (eastern standard time) and is intended for individuals living in the United States who are unable to get to the Center for Cognitive-Behavioral Psychotherapy. The group is facilitated by Dr. Jonathan Sandler, Ph.D.

We are now also offering a Family and Friends OCD Support Group. All loved ones of those who have been struggling with the condition are welcome to join.


Sessions will consist of emotional support and practical feedback from fellow members, as well as psychoeducation and professional guidance from group co-facilitators.


If you are interested in reserving your spot or would like additional information, please contact Dr. Jonathan Sandler at

Intensive Treatment

The Center for Cognitive-Behavioral Psychotherapy is now offering an intensive outpatient treatment for individuals struggling with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD). The intensive outpatient treatment is designed to benefit those who have traditional forms of OCD including contamination concerns or germ concerns, those who experience intrusive thoughts or those who experience an over-attached responsibility to protect others through physical or metaphysical harm factors (see What is O.C.D.?). This treatment is appropriate for individuals who have had other treatment failures. Individuals who may have a more severe symptom presentation may benefit from this treatment. In addition, the intensive treatment program is advantageous for those requiring a short-term treatment effect, such as individuals in jeopardy of losing employment due to the impairing nature of their symptom presentation, or persons who have difficulty managing the cost of the more typically protracted treatment process. Additionally, those who have had difficulty abiding to the discipline required to complete homework in between sessions individually, as required by more traditional treatment, may benefit from the support and guidance of an intensive treatment team. Those who may feel uncomfortable in a more traditional inpatient psychiatric unit where they would be sharing space with persons who experience more diverse and severe psychological pathologies may find this program to be advantageous. The benefits of engaging in an intensive program are supported by research which suggests that individuals enrolled in an intensive exposure-based program are capable of achieving and maintaining similar goals as individuals enrolled in a standard weekly treatment program. An essential component in maintaining treatment success is the weekly follow up appointments. This component involves an integration and application of the success attained during the intensive period into the person’s home based life experiences.


The initial step of the treatment involves a screening to assess the individual’s qualifications for the program. This time-intensive treatment is overseen by Dr. Phillipson and is directed by our treatment team of licensed psychologists and pre-doctoral psychology fellows. This program entails engaging in exposure and response prevention (EX/RP) therapy. Anxiety-provoking challenges are comprehensively outlined during the initial stages of treatment. During ensuing sessions, these challenges are confronted in collaboration with the support, guidance and expertise of our treatment team. Sessions occur up to 5 days per week. In addition to engaging in EX/RP, this program is inherently sensitive to contributing personality conditions which have deleterious effects to the treatment process. These contributing personality conditions (i.e. Borderline Personality Disorder, Narcissistic Personality Disorder and Obsessive-Compulsive Personality Disorder) typically impede the relationship building process. The identification and inclusion of these personality factors represents a vital enhancement to the constructed treatment plan.


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