Essential workers in Boone County can now receive free mental health services through HeartSpace Clinic.
Doctors, nurses, teachers, counselors, caseworkers, social workers, teachers and people working in other essential roles in the medical and healing fields who have dealt with the impact of COVID-19 are eligible.
The services are being funded by the Boone County Community Health and Medical Fund, according to a news release from the Boone County Commission.
Essential workers can take advantage of individual therapy sessions, group services and a warm line, (573) 355-2568, open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday.
Services are offered both through telehealth and in person, adhering to safety guidelines.
Businesses that employ essential workers, such as schools, crisis centers and hospitals, are encouraged to reach out to the clinic for more information about group sessions for workers impacted by COVID-19.
"We are focusing on these populations in particular because of their unique position of being the helpers to our community, while also experiencing the stress of pandemic themselves," said Dr. Chris Lawrence, director of HeartSpace, a nonprofit in Columbia that provides trauma-informed training, consultations and mental health services. "It is important for those in the helping fields to learn how to help themselves in order to prevent burnout and other complications."