Phillip's Story


True Tales

Phillip Smith is a complex guy. Phillip is likeable and smart. Philip has Dual Diagnosis:  He has an Intellectual Disability and a Mental Health Challenge. Phillip was also diagnosed with an Autism Spectrum Disorder several years ago. Phillip does well with people that know him well and can offer him reasonable redirection.

Phillip is in Recovery. He has a diagnosis of a Bipolar Disorder, but it is not negatively affecting his ability to do the things he needs and likes to do at the present time. He is actually employed at two places and uses community resources appropriately. His mother has been a great advocate for Phillip. She found his residential provider agencies and has attempted to find the best clinicians available for Phillip. His residential agency continues to be very supportive.  Other providers might have given up on Phillip, but his current provider invested the time and effort necessary for Philip to get him where he is today. Phillip is also receiving intensive case management services from the Behavioral Health Intellectual Disability – Community Treatment Team (BHID-CTT) who sees him at least weekly and is able to provide support whenever it is needed. The BHID-CTT has been able to eliminate Phillip’s frequent emergency department visits and hospitalizations. Phillip has not had any inpatient hospitalizations since 2015. The BHID-CTT also found an opportunity for Phillip to have a meaningful job working in a community food bank.

Phillip has a serious chronic health problem called Psychogenic Polydipsia. Polydipsia means that a person drinks excessively. Often a physical health condition causes a person to drink excessively. When no physical health condition can be identified as causing the polydipsia and the person has a Bipolar Disorder or a Psychotic Disorder the condition is called Psychogenetic Polydipsia.

Drinking an excessive amount of fluid can cause serious physical and behavioral changes in a person. The physical symptom of water intoxication includes urinary incontinence, an inability to speak clearly, restlessness, lethargy and seizures. Behavioral complications include delirium, irritability, mood lability and poor judgement.

In 2014-2015, Philip had 5 psychical hospitalizations and 5 psychiatric hospitalizations, and Phillip also made frequent trips to Hospital Emergency Departments during the same period of time. In 2015, Philip was also charged with a crime. Fortunately he was able to stay out of jail, but he was placed under court supervision.

Phillip has had no hospitalizations or problems with law enforcement since 2015. What has changed? Phillip had been prescribed various psychotropic medications for approximately 20 years. None of the medications really helped him and many caused adverse side effects. Phillip had also had seen many psychiatrists, but no one seemed to understand his complex needs. Phillip has had numerous residential providers, but none had been able to positively manage Phillips behaviors. Phillip also had a number of Behavior Support Specialists but none of them seemed to really help him and his support team.

 Although 2014-2015 was a very difficult time for Phillip, positive things were actually happening as well. His mother had advocated for his current residential provider and they did not give up on him even when things were really not going well. Phillip was enrolled for services from the Behavioral Health Intellectual Disability – Community Treatment Team (BHID-CTT) on 5/19/15 which provided intensive supports for Philip and their staff helped support him in the community. Phillip finally found a psychiatrist that prescribed medication that more accurately helped him.

Phillip is receiving supports from two service systems (ID and MH) that should be providing services for him. The Intellectual disability Services system has helped him attain an Everyday Life, and the intensive supports that the BHID-CTT have  provided have helped him achieve a state of  Recovery. Phillip is a true success story!

For more information about the BHID-CTT program and how to obtain services, please click here: https://www.pchc.org