Center for the Healing Arts in Red Bank creates urgent care program

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RED BANK – New Jersey Center for the Healing Arts in Red Bank is offering an urgent care counseling option for individuals who may be in need of an immediate therapy session.

Drop-in counseling is now offered to the public at the facility’s office on Broad Street.

Graduate-level interns who work at the center will be available on Monday, Wednesday and Friday for crisis counseling, said Kristy Mathews, a mental health professional at New Jersey Center for the Healing Arts.

Mathews, who said one drop-in counselor will be available during designated hours, said it is not common for a mental health facility to offer on-the-spot counseling to individuals in need.

“(Immediate counseling) is really not something that exists in our society right now,” Mathews said, who added that some facilities in New Jersey offer a similar option.

Mathews said individuals who have depression, anxiety, panic attacks, family conflict, issues in school, relationship conflict, death in the family, divorce or domestic violence are among the issues the drop-in counselors are trained to address during drop-in hours.

Drop-in counseling is offered on Monday from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Wednesday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; and Friday from noon to 8 p.m. A 30-minute session with a drop-in counselor is $25. The counseling session may be extended by 30 minutes for an additional $20, Mathews said.

A session may only be extended if no one else is waiting to speak with a crisis counselor, Mathews said. She said the drop-in counselors who facilitate the program are prepared to handle emergency situations.

Carol L. Veizer, founder and director at New Jersey Center for the Healing Arts, said the drop-in counselors are supervised by senior clinicians.

The senior clinicians will not be a part of a counseling session, Veizer said, but will be present at the facility and ready to respond to an emergency situation.

“Because of the waiting period to get into a lot of counseling centers, if you can’t get an appointment right away, (some people) will often just decide they don’t need (counseling),” Veizer said.

At some facilities, Veizer said, an individual in need of mental health counseling may wait weeks or months before a counselor becomes available. The drop-in clinic is open to individuals of all ages. Children under 16 must be accompanied by an adult.