Dr. Hazen is the Chief Psychiatrist at Chartiers Center. In this role, she is responsible for treating Chartiers’ consumers in the Outpatient Program, the Substance Abuse Outpatient Program, and the Residential Treatment Program (RTP). She is also a member of the interdisciplinary team at the Sto-Rox FOR where she provides psychiatric services within the newly formed mental health clinic. The Sto-Rox Clinic is composed of a Chartiers Center psychiatrist, therapist and service coordinators.
Dr. Hazen has been practicing psychiatry for 15 years and she describes her strength as treating the chronically ill. She also has an expertise in the area of Substance Abuse. While she treats Chartiers’ consumers across the spectrum of services, she said she really enjoys her work at the RTP because it offers a holistic approach to treatment that includes family and other medical personnel in a structured environment. It is there that she says you see very ill consumers show vast improvement over time.
In her work with young adults and adults (she does not treat children); she said consumers all want to know why they are taking medication and how the medication works. Dr. Hazen supports a holistic approach to treatment whereby medication is important, but therapy is as important, if not more important in a person’s recovery. As the Chief Psychiatrist, she wants people to know that Chartiers’ provides a hometown feel for consumers dealing with mental health issues. She said Chartiers has a multitude of programs that treat consumers and support their stabilization, helping them to deal with their stress. In her approach to treatment she firmly believes that the more information she has on a patient, the better treatment she is able to provide. At Chartiers this approach is supported through collaboration of program services and weekly staffing’s.
When asked what challenges she faces in her position, Dr. Hazen responded “time management, especially in the field of addiction.” But then she went on to add that people would be surprised to know that in Western PA we have more access to services than in most areas of the country. With the increased access, she said we are able to provide more services to more people in need.
Having been employed at Chartiers Center for almost 6 months, we wanted to learn a little more about Dr. Hazen. She is originally from Northern Kentucky and earned her medical degree from the University of Louisville. Without prompting, she quickly added that her favorite basketball team is the University of Kentucky. Go Wildcats! Aside from an interest in college basketball, she enjoys family time and music. She plays the guitar and said her favorite music genre is rock ‘n roll. So we had to ask, favorite musician: Bruce Springsteen. She is also an animal lover and has a cat and dog. Her dog recently passed away and time will tell if she gets another pet. When asked what people would be surprised to know, we learned that Dr. Hazen played college sports and was the center on her college basketball team and was the 1st baseman for the Thomas More College Women’s Softball Team.
As a wrap up to the interview Dr. Hazen shared her philosophy of treatment. She said she practices a “harm reduction model” of treatment. This means meeting people where they are in their recovery and helping them get better. This has helped her treat more people and is where she has seen the most improvement. She said practicing this philosophy of treatment means the door is always open to helping consumers get to a better place.
We thank Dr. Hazen for her time and are happy to have her on board at Chartiers Center.