For Alaskans struggling with mental health: You’re not alone and help is there

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ANCHORAGE (KTUU) - Mental health professionals want Alaskans that are struggling with mental health during the pandemic to know that they are not alone and help is available to them.

About four in 10 Americans report the pandemic is affecting their mental health, according to a study by the Kaiser Family Foundation.

“Definitely more people are reaching out,” said Dr. Tami Lubitsh-White, a licensed psychologist in Anchorage. "The problem is that many people are concerned about their health insurance and what they cover and whether they will be able to do it over time. And there are more money concerns. So that is part of the equation, too.”

Lubitsh-White said that for those seeking counseling sessions, it may take a few calls to different offices to find someone taking in new patients because of the high demands.

“Providers have changed their hours, added weekends,” Tami Lubitsh-White said. “We're very proactive in really trying to be as available as practically possible to meet the demands to provide even short sessions.”

Lubitsh-White said counseling sessions could be a great resource, but there are more immediate options.

Careline is Alaska’s statewide suicide hotline, but the help is available to anyone struggling with mental health or knows someone struggling.

“The Careline is a resource for all Alaskans,” said Leah Van Kirk, the statewide suicide prevention coordinator with the Division of Behavioral Health. “It's free. It's completely confidential, which is really important.
Anyone can call in for any reason. So if you're feeling anxiety, if you're feeling lonely, because of all of the isolation, you can use this resource.”

Van Kirk said the hotline has not seen an increase in new callers since the pandemic began, but an increase in the frequency of those who already use the hotline.

The hotline is available 24/7 and help can be reached by calling 1-877-266-HELP or by texting 4HELP to 839863.

Van Kirk said the Division of Behavioral Health established a new resource for Alaska’s first responders. The AK Responders Relief Line provides anonymous crisis counseling and general support for first responders working on the front lines of the COVID-19 response. The service provides support to anyone who is at risk of exposure to COVID-19 as a result of their job in a medical setting. Behavioral Health colleagues are standing by to talk 24/7. The line can be reached by calling (844) 985-8275.

The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention recommends having a daily routine, setting goals, taking breaks, and more to keep morale up. They have more resources on their website.

Lubitsh-White recently compiled a list of providers in Anchorage taking new clients:

Alyeska Counseling Group LLC
There are other clinicians at the group also.
Population: Adults / Children / Couples / Families
Work in (geographical area): Throughout the state via telemedicine
Specialties: Mood Disorders, Women Issues, Multicultural Issues, Career/Work Issues, Relationship Issues
Modalities (e.g. EMDR, CBT, etc and also list group you are providing): CBT, ACT, MBT, Narrative Therapy
Hours of Operation: Monday - Thursday 7:30 am to 6:30 pm
Telehealth: Yes
Sessions in person: not at this time.
Insurance (and if there are insurance companies that you are a preferred provider): BCBS, Aetna, CuraLinc, KEPRO, ComPsych, Magellan, Optum,
Sliding scale: Yes
Contact information: (907) 782-4553;

Avante Medical Center
Population: Adults
Work in (geographical area): Anchorage
Specialties: Integrated Primary Care, Addiction, Mood Disorders, Anxiety, Career/Work Issues, Relationship Issues
Modalities: EMDR
Hours of Operation: Mainly
Telehealth: Yes
Sessions in person: Yes
Insurance: preferred provider for BCBS, and Aetna, work with other insurances too. '
Contact information: (907) 770-6700

Chantal Cohen Therapy aka Chantal Cohen, LMFT, RPT-S
Working with: Children (1 year +), Adolescents, Family and some Adults Specialty: Complex Trauma, Play Therapy, Reactive Attachment, Anxiety, EMDR, Filial Play Therapy and in training Animal Assisted Play Therapy, (AAPT) Certification Program, Parent-Child, Blended Families, Parenting, Complex Medical Issues (Children/Teens)
Telehealth: Yes
Insurance: Preferred Provider for Premera-Blue Cross and Tricare
Work Hours: Wednesday - Saturday
Currently only providing Tele-health services. Offers a free meet and greet
Contact information: (907) 346-0252

Coastal Wellness and Counseling, LLC
Population: Children/Adolescents/Adults/ Children/ Couples/Families
Work in (geographical area): Located in Anchorage/Offering Telehealth Statewide
Specialties: Trauma/Couples/Families
Modalities (IFS/EMDR, DBT, Family Systems, Gottman):
Hours of Operation: Varies
Telehealth: Yes
Sessions in person: Not at this time.
Insurance YES (No Medicaid/Medicare OR Tricare)
Sliding scale: YES
Contact information (email and phone number): 907-917-0191

Counseling Solutions of Alaska
Population: Adults/ Children/ Couples/ Families
Work in (geographical area): Anchorage
Specialties: Advanced Nurse Practitioners providing medication management, Licensed Social Workers and Licensed Professional Counselors providing Behavioral/Mental Health and Substance Abuse Counseling
Modalities EMDR, CBT, Gottman Method Couples Therapy, Brief Solutions Therapy, Play Therapy
Hours of Operation: Monday-Saturday. 8:00 am to 7:00 pm
Telehealth: Yes
Sessions in person: Not at this time.
Insurance Preferred providers for BCBS, Aetna, Providence, and Tricare. We cannot take Denali Kid Care, Medicaid or Medicare.
Sliding scale: no
Contact information 907-644-8044

Dome Arts LLC: Kathryn C. Mallory
Working with: Children 4 - 17, Parents, Families; all ages for Trauma-informed Expressive Arts Therapy
Specialty Areas: Play Therapy (Trauma- and Attachment-informed),
Child/Parent Relationship Therapy (also called Filial Therapy, Expressive Arts Therapy (all ages)
Hours: Monday - Friday; flexible hours to meet needs due to COVID-19
Telehealth: Yes, with Simple Practice Telehealth platform
Face to Face: Not at this time
Insurance: Tricare, Premera/Blue Cross/Blue Shield, Aetna.
Sliding fee scale for self pay
Contacts: phone (907) 457-1101; FAX (907) 457-1121 website:

Lubitsh Counseling LLC
Population: Adults/ Couples
Work in (geographical area): Offering Telehealth Statewide
Specialties: Integrated primary care- dealing with chronic disorder, Pain management, Trauma, Mood Disorders, Anxiety and stress, LGBTQ, Life transition, Relationship Issues, Addiction
Modalities): Psycho-dynamic, EMDR, Sensorimotor, Hypnosis
Hours of Operation: Varies
Telehealth: Yes
Sessions in person: not at this time.
Insurance: preferred provider BCBS, bill other insurances too.
Sliding scale: Yes, especially for COPID-19 related needs Contact information: (907) 3179442;

ND Systems Inc.
Serving mental health needs of children, adolescents, adults and elders.
Physically located Fairbanks however serving Statewide via telehealth.
Modalities & Specialties: Medication management, psychotherapy, CBT, Brainspotting, Sensorimotor Psychotherapy, Neurofeedback, Biofeedback for addressing symptoms of trauma, anxiety, depression and ADHD
Hours of operation: by appointment only, includes evening and weekends
Telehealth: Yes
In-person sessions: Yes
Insurances: Tri-care, Blue Cross Blue Shield, Aetna
Sliding Fee Scale: Yes with restrictions
Contact: 907-374-0852

Population: Adults/ Couples/ Families
Work in (geographical area): Anchorage
Specialties: Addictions/Co-Occurring Disorders, Marriage and Family Dynamics, Coupes, Counseling, DOT/SAP Services
Modalities: CBT EFT REBT DBT Trauma Focused Motivational Interviewing, The Gottman Method, and Solution Focused Therapy.
Hours of Operation: M-F 9-6
Telehealth: Yes
Sessions in person: Yes but depends on state mandates
Insurance: BCBS, Aetna, CuraLinc, KEPRO, ComPsych, Magellan, Optum,
Sliding scale: Yes
Contact information: 907-351-8249

WindRose Counseling, LLC
Population: Adults/Teens
Work in (geographical area): Mat-Su
Specialties: Anxiety, Trauma, Multicultural, LGBTQIA
Modalities: EMDR, DBT, EFT
Hours of Operation: Sunday/Monday 9-6, Saturday/Evening Intakes
Telehealth: Yes
Sessions in person: Typically yes but not at this time due to recommendations for social distancing.
Insurance: Out of Network with courtesy billing of preferred insurance. Contact information: (907)671-0160;

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