Behavioral health program offered for seniors

Behavioral health program offered for seniors

Beginning in mid-January, Carlinville Area Hospital will offer a new program for area residents coping with life issues relating to the aging process.

The Seniors Enjoying Life Fully (SELF) Program will be housed in the hospital’s new medical office building and has been under development for several months. An official start date has not yet been announced.

The program will primarily focus on group therapy, which will be conducted daily. Individual therapy and family or couple’s therapy will be offered on an as-needed basis for individuals participating in the program.

Treatment will be offered at least four days per week, with new patients typically attending two or three days per week. Groups will be small, with four to eight people.

The program will be staffed by a full-time licensed clinical social worker, a full-time registered nurse and support staff, such as a certified nurse’s assistant. The program will be overseen by a medical director who is a board-certified psychiatrist.

Any person can contact the program to request services; a physician’s referral is not required. Those interested will go through an evaluation process, which takes about an hour, to ensure that the program is right for them and that they can benefit from the services. Afterward, the client will meet with a licensed therapist or nurse who will go through a series of questions to help the staff understand the client’s primary problems and history. That session will also give the client a chance to ask questions, get detailed information about the treatment process and decide if they want to participate.

The program is covered by Medicare. For more information about the program, call (217) 854-3141.