COVID-19 Responses and Resources
We understand that these current times are challenging times and that each of us is affected in different ways. This page lets our current clients as well as others in the community know about our responses in these times as well as to provide resources for you. In addition to what is on this page, we encourage you to find other resources throughout our site as well as other reputable sites.
Announcements made for the practice related to COVID-19 are included here.
March 10, 2020 Announcement
VIDEO SESSIONS WITH CLINICIANS
Traditionally, most of our clinicians have not offered video-based sessions. This week, all of our clinicians received basic training in how to provide therapy and counseling using secure video platforms. This is not to change the standard way that we work with each of our clients, but to be prepared for needs that could arise in our current world climate.
Along with the US Surgeon General and many medical and public health officials, we understand that COVID-19 is a serious concern and that the spread of this infection will continue, at least over the short term. We are also aware that there is a lot of misinformation out there and that news reports may create higher fears than there should be. We encourage you to look to reputable sources (such as NYC Department of Health) for information about where things stand and about what you should do based on the latest scientific information. We also understand that times like this naturally make people worry and feel anxiety. Please feel free to talk with your clinician about these feelings. I encourage you not only because we are concerned about your mental health but the stress of anxiety can lower your general immune system and we would like to help you if we can.
We also want to make sure that you can continue to access your clinician should meeting in person not be possible. If you need to voluntarily isolate yourself ("quarantine yourself at home"), you can reach out to your clinician and schedule to meet with them through a video session. This may need to be scheduled at a different time as clinicians will generally conduct these sessions from a different location than where you usually see them. For those using insurance, these may or may not be covered by insurance and we can talk about how this can be handled. Your clinician will be able to go over the details with you when you are scheduling the session. The process is similar to talking with someone on Skype or Facetime but using a different platform that is more secure.
It is also possible that your clinician will have to voluntarily isolate themselves. In this case, rather than running the risk of infecting you, your clinician will offer to see people by video rather than in person. Similarly, if our office(s) had to close, we would let you know and offer the option of having video sessions.
Of course, it is possible that none of these conditions would become necessary, but we wanted to let you know how you can continue to get the care you might need from your clinician. In any case, this option will be there should they be needed and once we are able to things would go back to the normal way you are used to.
We are glad to be with each and every one of you on your journey to peace and wholeness.
The Rev. Christopher L. Smith, LCAC, LMHC, LMFT
President and Clinical Director
March 18, 2020 Announcement
ALL IN-PERSON SESSIONS WILL BE CONDUCTED BY VIDEO FOR NOW
As everyone should be aware, social isolating (which is really a term to describe physical distancing and should not mean that you become isolated in all ways form those you love and care about) is becoming our norm and public health officials are encouraging everyone to remain at home if at all possible. In order to do our part in this effort, all sessions at Seeking Shalom will be conducted through video technology, unless there is an emergency need that requires a session to be held otherwise. Our clinicians are trained to be able to work with you through these means and we are sure that you will be able to experience quality care this way. If you have any questions about this, please reach out to your clinician.
If there are people who are experiencing anxiety, stress, depression, relational difficulties during these times, we will also be able to conduct intake sessions for new clients through video sessions. If interested, please call us at (212)655-9605.
March 26, 2020 Announcement
ONLINE GROUPS TO HELP SUPPORT YOU
Starting next week we will have two groups weekly to support people who are being affected by the current situation. One group will focus on individuals and the other will focus on couples. For more information, please see below.
May 1, 2020 Announcement
Continued Use of Online Sessions
Most clients have transitioned over to online sessions without any difficulty. In fact, some people have been surprised at how similar to an in-office session a video session can be. It appears that the current "Stay at Home" orders may last for a while longer and for some people could still be in place for an extended period of time. If you have not tried video sessions and would like to, please reach out to your clinician at (212)655-9605.
Additionally, if you know of people that could use help at this time, we are still accepting new clients and your referrals would be appreciated so that we are able to help them on their journeys.
We do not know when we will be resuming sessions in the offices. Even when we do, the option will remain for you to continue online sessions if this is something that you would prefer or if this is necessary for your safety and health. Just as we told you at the outset that we intend to resume in office sessions when it is safe to do so, we are now also letting you know that you will have a choice about which way you would like to use going forward.
May 7, 2020 Announcement
This is NOT a Second Honeymoon
Today, we are pleased to announce the availability of a resource to help couples survive spending a lot of time together. This has been very different than normal life for a lot of couples and certainly has not been like having a second honeymoon for most. As a result, we have pulled together around thirty ways this can be challenging and explored not only the challenge but strategies you can use to help your relationship not only survive but also thrive. If you would like to get a copy, you can find it on Amazon or through our COVID-19 page.
April 26, 2021 Announcement
The couples group related to COVID on Thursday evening has now concluded. We are still offering the group for individuals on Tuesday evening and it remains free. If you or someone you know could use support from this group, please see the link on our page related to the pandemic (www.seekingshalom.org/covid19). We continue to offer services through telehealth. We do anticipate returning to also offer in person session in the office. We will let you know about procedures that will be in place before we resume this type of sessions, which could still be a few months from now.
We are offering two groups each week to be of support to you. One group will be focused on the ways you are being impacted as an individual and the other will be focused on the special ways that couples are being impacted at this time. Both groups will be online and knowing some of the challenges that people are facing, we want o offer paths to peace and wholeness without you having to worry about the cost.
The Tuesday individual group is still meeting, but the Thursday couples group has concluded.
If you or someone you know could benefit from this type of support, please follow the directions on this flier:
“My Life Has Changed”
Individuals feeling the impact are invited to join us to explore how their lives are being affected as well as to look at things that could help them at this time.
"This is Not a Second Honeymoon”
Couples realizing that everything that is going on is impacting their relationship are invited to join to explore this as well as to look at things that could help at this time.
THIS GROUP HAS CONCLUDED
If you have needs in your relationships, please contact one of our clinicians. Diana, who had facilitated this group is available at 212-655-9605.
A Resource We Developed
There are lots of resources available for dealing with different ways that you might be impacted by this pandemic. However, one area that appeared to not be getting enough attention was how couples and their relationships were being affected. As a result, we prepared this resource for our clients and others affected to highlight a number of these concerns and to offer some suggestions of what you can do to not only allow your relationship to survive but also to thrive. If this could be helpful to your seeking and maintaining peace and wholeness, we offer it to you.Order the Book at Amazon
SOME OTHER HELPFUL INFORMATION
Information from the CDC
Information from NYC
Information from NY State
Information from the World Health Organization
Mental Health and COVID-19
CDC on Managing Anxiety and Stress Around COVID-19
World Health Organization's Mental Health Considerations during COVID-19 Outbreak
COVID-19 Resource and Information Guide from NAMI
Resources for COVID-19 from the National COuncil for Behavioral Health
Relationships and COVID-19
How the Coronavirus Can Damage Relationships
Dealing with a Partner who Might Have Coronavirus (TIME)
How to Prevent Loneliness in a Time of Social Distancing (Scientific America)
Guidance for Military Families from Military One Soource
This is NOT a Second Honeymoon (our resource)
Help for Businesses Around COVID-19
Assistance & Guidance for Businesses IMpacted Due to Novel Coronavirus (NYC Small Business Services)
COVID-19 Small Business Resources (America's SBDC)
New York State Empire State Development
COVID-19 Small Business Guidance and Loan Resources (US Small Business Administration)
Help for Individual Issues and COVID-19
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