Aradhana “Bela” Sood, M.D.Division of Child Psychiatry
Aradhana “Bela” Sood, M.D., was drawn to the field of child psychiatry by her desire to make a lasting impact through early intervention. Recognizing that children depend on multiple adults for emotional wellness, she feels the most effective treatment methods should incorporate everyone, from family, teachers and members of the community, to a wide variety of health professionals — all working in collaboration. She refers to this idea as the “wrap around approach” and found VCU’s urban setting and centralized location to be the perfect match for this methodology.
With Dr. Sood as its medical director, VCU’s Virginia Treatment Center for Children was the first psychiatric hospital in Virginia to permit parents to “room in” with
residential patients, where they also participate in team meetings. And because most of VTCC’s patients arrive from areas near Richmond, she is also able to incorporate their teachers, counselors and past therapists into the treatment planning process. Her methods have helped to establish VTCC as a flagship center for effective clinical treatment and training in the field of children’s mental health care.
Editor’s note: In addition to her role as medical director for VCU’s VTCC, Dr. Sood is professor and chair of the Division of Child Psychiatry. VTCC is the pediatric service of VCU’s Department of Psychiatry and a service of the Children’s Hospital of Richmond at VCU.