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Stress and Anxiety Resulting from the Pandemic
The COVID-19 pandemic has us all struggling with challenges to our health and the health of our families and our neighbors, as well as other challenges that include loss of income, changes in our normal routines and behavior and more. We are inundated with news about illness, death, consumer shortages, controversies related to the pandemic and so much more that cause us distress and anguish. These affect us behaviorally, physically, emotionally and intellectually.
During this period of time, the need for psychotherapy to deal with the present crisis has never been greater and at the same time the need to prevent infection to ourselves and others has made it more difficult to obtain necessary mental health services.
Since mid-March our psychotherapy offices have been closed for in-person counseling sessions. We have been conducting sessions through remote telehealth services and we anticipate that we will always continue to provide those types of services as an adjunct or alternative mode of counseling, depending on clients' needs or preferences and as permitted under applicable regulations and insurance plan provisions.
Reopening Our Offices for In-Person Therapy
Optimistically, we will reopen our offices for face-to-face therapy sessions effective July 7, 2020. We intend to gradually begin scheduling appointments in our offices at 1388 Freeport Road in Fox Chapel and in the Versailles Professional Plaza in McKeesport. We recommend that clients continue to utilize remote telehealth or telephonic services whenever possible. Most clients find it more convenient and quite effective. In some cases, it may be preferable to schedule initial appointments in-person and then a mix of remote and live sessions thereafter. Please feel free to discuss your preferences and needs when scheduling.
Precautions for In-Office Visits
When you are scheduled for an office visit we ask that you comply with the following:
1. Wear face covering during the entire time you are in our office suite.
2. Use hand sanitizer provided in the office.
3. Maintain distancing by six feet or more whenever possible.
4. For individual appointments please only one person in the waiting room. Others who wish to wait for a patient are requested to wait in their vehicle.
5. For couples' or family sessions, please use your cell phone to call your therapist and announce your arrival and we will call you when it is time for your appointment.
We are taking the following steps in the interest of combating COVID-19:
1. Provide you a disposable face mask, if you need one.
2. Make hand sanitizer available for your use.
3. Maintain a 'No Physical Contact' policy regarding touching.
4. Sanitize with ozone gas the night before any in-person appointments are scheduled, and disinfect with disinfectant wipes or spray on surfaces between appointments.
We look forward to the opportunity to serve you.
Karen J Stickel, LCSW, BCD
Chuck Kuhn, LCSW, BCD