SUNY announces expansion to mental health services for students

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BROOKLYN, N.Y. (WWTI) — The State University of New York has launched a new plan to expand access to mental health services for all 64 campuses.

State University of New York Chancellor Jim Malatras announced a comprehensive plan for all campuses following a nationwide uptick in mental health and wellness brought on by COVID-19.

“This has been a particularly difficult time and it has taken a toll, so by expanding available student mental health support services—and shattering the stigma that may be associated with seeking them out—students will be able to get the support they need, be it a long-term treatment for a specific issue, or when they just feel down and need someone to connect with,” stated Chancellor Malatras.

According to Chancellor Malatras, SUNY is partnering with Thriving Campus, a HIPAA- compliant web application that connects on-campus counseling services and local mental health and wellness service, providers. SUNY and Thriving Campus will provide access to over 6,000 licensed mental health service providers for all students.

SUNY stated that the application, already used at several campuses, “breaks down a number of crucial, often overlooked barriers that students frequently encounter in the process of reaching out for help.”

Additionally, Chancellor Malatras announced a new partnership between SUNY Downstate Health Sciences University and SUNY Upstate Medical University. The two will provide a “hub” for student tele-counselling. Tele-counseling will offer cognitive behavioral therapy, consultative services for clinicians and crisis assistance.

Corresponding with the expansion of services, SUNY Chancellor Malatras launched a public awareness campaign titled #ReachOutSUNY. The campaign will provide education on services and help stray from mental health stigmas.

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