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Virtual counseling, anytime

New York Teacher
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Life can be tough. As a result of ongoing levels of anxiety, grief and loneliness, the UFT Member Assistance Program looked for new ways to meet the increased requests for support from members and their families.

As part of its expansion of offerings — a new careline for immediate telephone counseling, virtual support groups and more — MAP formed a partnership with HelloHero, a clinical organization offering long-term, high-quality virtual mental health care for adults and children.

“We have already heard from members about how wonderful it is to be immediately connected to mental health care with such ease and urgency,” said MAP Director Tina Puccio. Nearly 250 union members and their family members have been connected through MAP to HelloHero for HIPAA-compliant, virtual counseling and psychiatric services on a wide range of issues.

As demand for mental health services increased citywide during the pandemic, finding appropriate counseling services in a timely manner became more difficult.

“Members appreciate the union taking on this partnership to help them and their families manage their mental health needs,” Puccio said. That has been the goal of the Member Assistance Program since it was founded in 2009, she said, and each year it has added new programs and modalities to meet members’ needs.

HelloHero supports individuals and families in addressing the emotional and behavioral challenges of issues such as anxiety, depression and PTSD. Family and couples counseling also is available and prescriptions can be provided when necessary.

For mental health counseling for yourself or an immediate family member, contact MAP by email or call 212-510-6366 to speak with a HelloHero intake coordinator.

After MAP makes a referral to HelloHero, expect to start care within 24 to 48 hours.

HelloHero is an in-network provider with UFT members’ health insurance, so billing is automatic. Check with your health care provider to determine the copay.

The UFT Member Assistance Program will continue to provide members with mental health assessments and consultations, wellness workshops, support groups, professional development and referrals for mental health and substance use concerns.