Partnership to address “crisis-level priority”
August 2018 (Jefferson County) – Residents of Jefferson County will have a new, convenient option to address their mental health needs starting in September. Jefferson County Health Department has chosen to partner with Provident to offer services at their offices in High Ridge and Hillsboro as well as through their Mobile Wellness Van. The partnership was funded by the Jefferson Foundation.
An assessment conducted by the Foundation in 2005 found that 59% of area providers identified mental health and psychiatric services as either a “high” or a crisis-level” priority. The 2018 County Health Rankings report that Jefferson has a ratio of 1,310 residents for every one mental health provider, which is over double the state-wide rate and more than trip the rate in neighboring St. Louis County.
“Our 2017 Community Health Assessment found 28% of county respondents self-identify as struggling with depression or anxiety. Individuals struggling with serious mental illness are at higher risk for homicide, suicide, and accidents as well as chronic conditions including cardiovascular and respiratory diseases and substance use disorders. Mental and physical health are intertwined,” said Kelley Vollmar, Director of Jefferson County Health Department. “Partnering with Provident has allowed us to offer a more holistic care model for our clients by bringing the services they need to the convenient sites they already use.”
Most private insurance is accepted and a sliding fee scale based on financial need keeps appointments affordable.
The 2017 Jefferson County Behavioral Health Profile found, “In Eastern (excluding St. Louis) Missouri, 17.3% of those 18 and older had a mental illness in the past year; 6.7% of those ages 18+ had at least one major depressive episode in the past year; and county students in 6th-12thgrades reported 13.7% had considered suicide in the last year, 9.1% made a plan, and 1.2% actually attempted, resulting in an injury. In 2014, 48 Jefferson County residents died by suicide.”
“Provident has been serving the St. Louis region for nearly 160 years. We are excited to be working with the Jefferson County Health Department to provide excellent, expanded care to people throughout their area,” said Kevin Drollinger, Executive Director of Provident.
About therapist Lisa Krystosek, JD, MHA, LPC
Lisa Krystosek, JK, MHA, LPC, has been selected as the first therapist for this program. She is currently a counselor with Provident’s Life Crisis Services team, has a private practice in Clayton, MO, and works with an equine-assisted psychotherapy program in Jefferson County. She is a licensed attorney in Missouri and a doctoral candidate in Counselor Education at the University of Missouri-St. Louis. She has been working with therapy clients in Jefferson County since 2015 and is looking forward to expanding her involvement with the community.
Residents can schedule an appointment by calling Provident’s toll-free number at 1-800-782-1008 or Lisa at 314-657-7224
About the Jefferson County Health Department
The mission of the Jefferson County Health Department is to protect, promote and improve the quality of life for residents of Jefferson County. They offer administrative, nursing, environmental health, and community health services; educational training; and emergency preparedness. They have offices in Hillsboro, MO, and Arnold, MO. Visit jeffcohealth.org for more information.
Provident is a mental healthcare agency offering counseling, crisis intervention, and community education to St. Louis city and county residents for nearly 160 years. The organization seeks to help individuals and families achieve a brighter future through counseling, suicide prevention and intervention, and community support programs, and envisions a St. Louis community in which mental health services are accessible to all, especially the most vulnerable and underserved.
Amanda Cook Public Relations