Mclean Hospital
Guides to Care

Guide to Inpatient Care at McLean Hospital

Helpful Information for Patients, Families, and Friends


Each day, you will meet with members of your treatment team, including your doctors and a clinical social worker. You will attend group sessions to help you better understand your illness and manage your symptoms, learn strategies and skills to assist in your recovery, and work on lifestyle and safety plans for maintaining your recovery and wellness.

Your treatment may include medication evaluation and management, group and family therapy, education, and support. Group psychotherapy provides you the opportunity to interact with others at your own pace and comfort level and, in so doing, contributes to a caring and supportive environment—an essential factor in your recovery. You will receive a copy of the group program schedule on your unit so you can plan when to participate. Group meeting times and schedules are also written on the whiteboard near the nursing station.

Your nurse will be available whenever you have questions during the course of a day. Your nurse is also responsible for providing you with your medication. Throughout the day, you will have opportunities to meet other patients who may be dealing with similar issues and challenges. They can offer valuable wisdom, support, and insight and can help you in your recovery.

In an effort to promote sleep, patients are encouraged to be in their rooms between 11:30 pm and 6 am. A good night’s rest is important not only for your mental health, but your physical health as well. Getting up at a reasonable time in the morning is helpful to ensure that you have a substantial breakfast and will be alert and ready for group programs and other treatments.


Meals are served in a dining area on each unit. Breakfast is served between 8 am and 9 am (varies by unit), lunch at noon, and dinner at 5 pm. McLean’s Dietary Services accommodate diets for patients with medical restrictions (e.g., diets appropriate for patients with diabetes or food allergies). Dietary Services can also provide meals for vegetarians and vegans and meals based on religious principles (e.g., kosher). Please let your physician know of your dietary requirements.

McLean inpatient careVisitors may bring you food and beverages as long as these items do not adversely affect your health. Alcoholic beverages are not allowed. In many instances, we ask that you do not consume energy drinks or other high-caffeine beverages that may affect your metabolism. Additionally, certain foods pose a risk to your health if you are taking a class of medication known as MAO inhibitors. Your physician and nurse will instruct you about food or beverage restrictions related to your medication. Ask your nurse if you have questions or concerns about what you should or should not be eating and drinking.

Secure Units

All inpatient units are locked and all patients are seen by staff at regular intervals to promote a safe environment. Some inpatient units allow patients to leave the unit with family or friends. Please check with your treatment team.


McLean’s inpatient programs are located on the hospital’s main campus in Belmont, Massachusetts, and at McLean SouthEast in Middleborough, Massachusetts. Please visit Maps & Directions for more information on directions, parking, and local accommodations.


You may want family and friends to visit you. Check with the staff on your unit about visiting hours as these hours vary by inpatient program. Visiting hours are also posted in the unit.

Sometimes visitors can only come to the hospital during a certain time because of work, family, or other obligations. Visitors who need to come outside visiting hours should call the nursing station to check with the unit staff about special arrangements for visiting. You have the right to refuse visitors.

Visitors may also bring items that you might want or need during your stay. See the checklist found in the Guide to Arriving at McLean Hospital.


All inpatient units are handicap accessible. Interpreter services are available at no cost for non-English speaking patients and their families. Telecommunications devices for deaf and hearing-impaired patients also are available. Please let a staff member know if you need these services.