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It’s no secret that the pandemic has led to significant anxiety and mental health challenges, including for many of our patients. PPMM Behavioral Health Clinician Shana S. says she has been talking via telehealth to former patients, who have returned to PPMM for behavioral health services since the pandemic began, and to many new patients as well.

“I speak with a wide range of people whose emotional lives have been made so much more difficult by the pandemic,” Shana said. “Parents and caregivers of special needs kids are finding this especially challenging. So are teenagers who are having a really hard time focusing on online classes because the experience doesn’t feel valid to them.

“The high rate of isolation during the pandemic means I’ve been hearing about a lot of depression, anxiety, and higher rates of domestic abuse. Being able to speak with patients – including many who have never had any kind of therapy before – and give them the tools and resources to manage this stress and stay safe is so essential to their health.”

Shana said that PPMM’s ability to incorporate mental health into the services we provide has added a critical dimension of care during this devastating public health crisis.

“That therapeutic hour that I spend with people is really sacred,” she said. “Many people have had to gather up a lot of courage just to make the appointment. My schedule is full because there is so much hurting out there.

“I am just so grateful that PPMM acknowledges how important mental health is and that we’re able to provide counseling for so many who would be out there on their own to deal with this pressure, isolation, and fear if it weren’t for us.”

Tags: depression, Anxiety, Coping_Tools

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