Hospital offers free help for economic victims- Philadelphia News

January 13, 2009 1:12:05 PM PST
Friends Hospital in Philadelphia has seen a rise in people depressed by the bad economy. Now it is offering free services to help people heal the emotional damage.

The sagging economy is on everyone's mind.

But for some, it's causing serious emotional problems.

In fact, experts think a third of those facing foreclosure have clinical depression.

So Friends Hospital in Northeast Philadelphia is offering free outpatient therapy sessions to help people with anxiety or depression due to the economy

Dr. Marc Rothman, the hospital's Chief Medical Officer, says, "We do assessment, we do counseling about resources available, we provide them with coping mechanisms to help deal with the additional stressors they are feeling, and prepare them for referral to other resources long-term in the community."

Dr. Rothman says many people are unknowingly struggling with varying degrees of depression.

He listed some telltale signs -

*Eating too much or too little

*Sleeping too much or too little

*Difficulty concentrating.

*Unexplained aches and pain

*A lack of energy or restlessness.

Dr. Rothman says many people have never been through economic stress like this before, and don't have strong coping skills. Those with a past history of emotional distress are the most vulnerable to trouble right now

"We want to be the first step in having them cope with the reality they have to deal with to make a better future," said Dr. Rothman.

To get more information, or schedule an appointment, call Michael Thomas at Friends Hospital at 215-831-4612.