Utah now offers free counseling for COVID-19 related stress

Illustration courtesy of U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

UTAH, July 16, 2020 (Gephardt Daily) — Utah is now offering free counseling for COVID-19 related stress.

“More than 40 crisis counselors are ready to answer your call if you are experiencing stress, anxiety or depression or increased substance misuse because of COVID-19,” said a news release from Coronavirus.utah.gov.

The Utah Strong Recovery Project is funded by a FEMA grant facilitated by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, the news release said. The funding is designated to the Utah Department of Human Services Division of Substance Abuse and Mental Health to provide statewide emotional support services specifically as a result of the pandemic.

Services include emotional support, crisis counseling, mental health education and coping strategies, and referral to additional services and professional help, if needed. All information is confidential and free of charge.

“Most of us have never experienced a pandemic or such a shift in our everyday way of life,” said Robert Snarr, the state’s grant administrator for the Recovery Project. “It is normal to feel stress at a time when you may be experiencing isolation, economic hardship, health worries, or the loss of a loved one. We want to talk through those feelings and provide you with professionally-led guidance on how you can cope with the changes in your world in a healthy, mentally strong way.”

The team of professionals has already helped more than 150 people through its initial targeted outreach. With more counselors now on board, the services are available to any Utahn who needs help coping with any stress related to COVID-19.

To talk to a Utah Strong Recovery Project counselor seven days a week 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., call/text 385-386-2289 or email your first name and phone number to [email protected] After hours if you need an immediate response, please contact the Utah statewide Crisis Line at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or the SAMHSA Distress Hotline at 1-800-985-5990. Video chat and counseling in Spanish and other languages is available.


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