Possible signs of psychosis? It's important to get help early.


VIPS (Ventura early Intervention Prevention Services) is a program in Ventura County which helps identify and get early help for psychosis. If you or someone you care about is showing some of the signs listed below (and is between 16-25 years old), please call (805) 642-7033 for a confidential assessment.

Early treatment can make a big difference and slow the progression of psychosis. If you think it might be a problem for you, a family member or friend, don't wait! 

Symptoms to be concerned about

The following symptoms may be a temporary reaction to major stresses or other causes. However, it is possible that they are early signs of a developing psychotic illness. If it's a mental illness, the most likely ages to develop symptoms is between 16-25. They can include:

     •  Hearing, seeing or feeling things that others don’t perceive
     •  Difficulty in focus, concentration or memory
     •  Feeling overly fearful or suspicious
     •  Changes in sensitivity to light, sound or touch; decreased sense of smell
     •  Difficulty with conversations or being understood
     •  Dramatic changes in behaviors, ideas, sleep or appetite
     •  Withdrawal from friends and family
     •  Deterioration in school or work functioning
     •  Suicidal thoughts

What VIPS Does

The VIPS team is trained to assess young people experiencing possible early warning signs of psychosis. If treatment is needed, they assist young people and their families to build coping skills, reduce stress, and increase performance in all areas of their life. 

What participants say:

        “Everyone cared and made me feel accepted no matter what I was thinking or feeling.”

        “The advice I receive is always geared toward me – not just generic platitudes.”

        "I am just so grateful for these services. They have helped me a lot.”

VIPS also educates community members who can help identify young people who seem to have early symptoms of psychosis. Community members can include staff at high schools, colleges and community centers, healthcare professionals, spiritual leaders and law enforcement.

The VIPS program is offered by Ventura County Behavioral Health in partnership with Telecare Corporation. 

For more information or a confidential assessment for ages 16-25, call VIPS at (805) 642-7033.

For ages under 16 or over 25, talk to your healthcare provider or call the VCBH STAR Team at