By Dr. Beth Salcedo, Medical Director of The Ross Center
It’s hard to believe how many months it has been since the World Health Organization declared Covid 19 a global pandemic. The losses have been staggering, not only from the virus and its economic fallout, but also from the traumatic social and environmental experiences of our citizens and our country. In addition, we have endured a polarized election that has wrought political disruption and uncertainty. We have all been impacted in so many ways.
As a result, the mental health needs of our country are increasing; rates of anxiety and depression are rising and affecting all ages and every demographic. Many of us are really struggling, and some more than others. Our country’s problems with access to healthcare are more pronounced than ever, especially for those historically underserved and underrepresented people who are the hardest hit by the current events.
As mental health professionals, we are seeing a huge effort on the part of our advocacy and member organizations, as well as our individual colleagues, to begin to address these areas of deficiency. We at The Ross Center are committed to doing everything we can to take care of our current patients and to provide needed services to the community.
Our amazing group of psychiatrists and therapists are sharing helpful ideas and resources in webinars and blogs to support our community, and these can be found on our website and are free to the public. You can also follow us on social media, where we are frequently sharing helpful articles and opportunities offered by colleagues and fellow mental health professionals.
We hope that these resources prove to be educational and supportive to anyone who is struggling with pandemic-related anxiety or to issues surrounding the impact of racial inequality on mental health, We also want to provide insight and support for family members in understanding what their loved one is going through. We have a multitude of resources on our website, including contact information for organizations that can connect those in the community with professionals who are available to help.
We encourage each and every one of you to utilize what is available, to pay close attention to how you are feeling, and to seek professional help when it is needed. Please take a look at our website’s News & Events and Blog pages, where what we have shared everything from good self-care recommendations to guidance for helping a suicidal loved one.
Our mental health providers are continuing to offering remote tele-health treatment to residents of Virginia, Maryland, Washington DC and New York. Our team of psychologists and psychiatrists have expertise in treating adults and children, and our child specialists are trained to offer age-appropriate treatment to children and teens who are feeling particularly isolated at this unprecedented time. In addition to therapy and psychiatric services, we are also offering virtual testing services in Virginia and DC.
We can all benefit from a focus on our mental health during times like these. I hope that you and your loved ones are healthy and safe. Please reach out if we can help.