Print Karen Bermel LIMHP, MC

Happy New Year to all of you from Alegent Creighton Health’s Behavioral Health Team! I am hoping that your new year is off to a healthy start, and that your holidays were filled with the good stuff that makes holidays meaningful.

Over Christmas and New Year’s, I began thinking about the services we provide at Alegent Creighton Health, particularly with regard to outpatient mental and behavioral health. One of the things I’m very aware of regarding mental and behavioral health services is that there is frequently some anxiety and hesitation regarding seeking services. Needless to say, even in this modern world, there can still be a bit of a stigma attached to seeking services for mental-health issues. Sometimes we really have to muster up our courage to make the first phone call to get the help we need; other times, a crisis occurs and there is no choice but to reach our for help. No matter what the catalyst, I want to share just a little information with you regarding what you can expect if you make an appointment with one of our outpatient providers. 

Alegent Creighton Behavioral Health is actually quite a large system offering inpatient, outpatient and partial hospitalization services. There are specialists in each of these areas ranging from:

  • Psychiatrists  who are medical doctors and can prescribe medication;
  • Psychiatric Nurse Practitioners who can also prescribe medication;
  • Psychologists who offer therapy and various forms of psychological assessments;
  • Master’s Level Social Workers and Counselors who offer therapy to all age groups, ranging from children to older adults.

Services offered at the outpatient level of our Mental and Behavioral-Health System range from dealing with depression, anxiety, bipolar disorders, crisis intervention, health challenges, grief, loss, relationship issues, substance abuse, and much, much more.

For those who have never been to see a behavioral-health provider in an outpatient clinic, the first appointment gives the provider an opportunity to get to know you. Once the initial paperwork is filled out, you’ll have a chance to sit down with the provider and discuss the reasons prompting you to seek services. The provider will get to know you further by asking questions not only about what brought you in for services, but about your family history, educational background, physical health concerns, spiritual path, and other pertinent information that can help the provider really get to know you.

One of the biggest questions asked of patients by their providers is, “What do you hope to get out of therapy?” Not every provider asks it just like that, but knowing what your goal of treatment is helps the provider create the treatment plan specific to you. The treatment plan and treatment goal become a type of foundation or road map to help you and the provider stay on track in future appointments, and get the results you desire.

It is an amazing process to sit with someone who is actively pursuing a better life, working through various challenges, but remaining focused on intentionally producing a new and positive result. But, I don’t want to give you a false impression that therapy is easy. In fact, it can be quite challenging. To sit before a provider for the first time and tell your story – possibly a story that no one else has ever heard – can feel pretty intimidating. It can also be difficult to come back for future appointments and review what has or has not gone well with regard to achieving the treatment goal. Alegent Creighton Health providers are extremely well trained with their educational backgrounds and with ongoing continuing education requirements to provide the highest quality mental and behavioral health care. We are also well trained in helping provide a safe environment to make the process for you as rewarding as possible.

If you would like more information about Alegent Creighton Health Mental and Behavioral Health Services, I invite you to call our Information and Referral Line at (402) 717-HOPE (4673).  There are some very nice people who staff this phone number, and I know they will be happy to answer your questions and provide you will helpful information.

Take care and, again, Happy New Year!



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