~ Press release provided by the Virginia Telemental Health Initiative
RICHMOND, Sep. 18 — The Virginia Telemental Health Initiative (VTMHI), a pro bono program that provides free and convenient telemental health services to eligible Virginians without insurance, is thrilled to announce that four new free and charitable clinics have joined the statewide initiative. New program partners include Page Free Clinic in Luray, Shenandoah Community Health Clinic in Woodstock, Ledwith-Lewis Free Clinic in Tappahannock, and CrossOver Healthcare Ministry in Richmond and Henrico.
The program’s free mental health services, which are supported by volunteer mental health providers, offer a range of therapies, including those for patients experiencing symptoms of depression and anxiety and other behavioral and mental health concerns.
All services are provided virtually through telehealth, a secure and increasingly popular patient-provider arrangement, to enrolled patients at participating free and charitable clinics.
“We’re so grateful for the important work Virginia’s free and charitable clinics are doing across the state to ensure all Virginians have access to quality care,” said Mara Servaites, Executive Director of the Virginia Telehealth Network, a statewide nonprofit who led the creation of VTMHI. “We look forward to continuing to collaborate with VTMHI’s clinic partners to expand free teletherapy services for qualifying patients in new regions across the Commonwealth.”
VTMHI matches pre-licensed volunteers who have completed their graduate-level coursework and are in the process of completing clinical licensure, with participating free and charitable clinics to provide services to new and existing patients while earning supervised clinical contact hours and free training — a structure that aims to enhance workforce development across Virginia.
Under the leadership of the Virginia Telehealth Network, the program is made possible thanks to the collaboration of the Virginia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services, the Virginia Association of Free and Charitable Clinics, the University of Virginia Karen S. Rheuban Center for Telehealth, the Mid-Atlantic Telehealth Resource Center, ViTel Net, and VTMHI’s free clinic participants.
Since launching in December 2022, VTMHI has engaged with 10 clinics across the state. The four clinics partnering with VTMHI this month join Fauquier Free Clinic, Bradley Free Clinic (Roanoke), Brock Hughes Medical Center (Wytheville), Charlottesville Free Clinic, Free Clinic of Franklin County/Bernard Healthcare Center and Health Brigade (Richmond).
Additional clinics will join the initiative on a rolling basis and VTMHI will become an independent virtual clinic in 2024. Patients can contact the clinics directly to determine their eligibility and make appointments.
For more information about eligibility requirements and how Virginia residents can access mental health services through VTMHI, visit https://virginiatelementalhealth.org/accesscare/.
For more information about VTMHI, visit https://virginiatelementalhealth.org/.