Free mental health clinic for veterans and their families to open in 2019

Posted at 5:22 PM, Nov 16, 2018
and last updated 2018-11-16 17:22:38-05

The Steven A. Cohen Military Family Clinic at Easterseals Grand Opening in Silver Spring

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. – The Steven A. Cohen Military Family Clinic will open next year in Virginia Beach to serve post-9/11 veterans and military family members.

The Cohen Veterans Network, in partnership with local nonprofit The Up Center, will provide patients with treatment for a variety of mental health issues including depression, PTSD, adjustment issues, grief and loss, transitional challenges and more at no or low-cost.

The Veterans Network started in 2016 and was inspired by Steven Cohen’s son, who joined the United States Marine Corps, while the Up Center is the region’s oldest and largest non-profit family services agency.

The Virginia Beach Department of Economic Development assisted the Cohen Veterans Network with finding the location of the new clinic and vetting potential partners, according to a release by the city.

“As a veteran myself, it’s gratifying to know that the City of Virginia Beach could be a strategic partner in locating the Cohen Military Family Clinic here,” said Deputy City Manager Ron Williams. “The clinic will expand healthcare service providers and make much-needed mental health resources available for our veterans.”

Earlier this year, Virginia Beach Mayor Will Sessoms mentioned the Cohen Veterans Network opening in his State of the City address, saying it will serve up to 600 post-9/11 veterans and their families with 20 employees.

The clinic is expected to open by May 2019, and will also allow veterans and their families across Virginia to access telehealth treatment through the Cohen Veterans Network online service delivery option. The expected wait time between first contact and a first appointment at the clinic is less than a week.

The clinic approaches care differently than others, said Anthony Guido, who handles communications for the nonprofit foundation.

“We try to break down those barriers by what we create. These warm, comfortable environments they’re walking into. To break all barriers, the access for sure and financial. Our clinics are open nights and weekends too,” said Guido. “If you call one of our clinics you go through intake process that same day. If you go through trouble or crisis you get your appointment that same day.”