Staying Connected
Central Florida Health News|August 2020
Staying Connected
Peace River Center Navigates The ‘New Normal’ During Pandemic
PAUL CATALA

THE FEAR AND ANXIETY caused by COVID-19 has become universal, causing many to feel isolated, lonely, stressed and anxious. Throughout the country, healthcare practitioners are adapting to the changing times and finding ways to help people deal with the added stress.

At Peace River Center, one of the largest behavioral health agencies in Florida with 27 locations and 30 programs, work has been ongoing since the coronavirus made inroads into the United States and Florida back in March.

Ileana Kniss, director of community relations and development, says the center is actively working to stay in touch with its clients during social distancing through appointments and community outreach.

To give clients access to outpatient care, Kniss, who joined the center in April 2017, says the agency operates through a telehealth system. Through the Access to Care department and telehealth, staff members are able to help clients with issues regarding telehealth.

“Our 24-hour facilities also remain fully operational throughout COVID-19. PRC provides several inpatient facilities and services that continue to provide housing and emergency psychiatric care to our community,” says Kniss.

Among those PRC facilities are two domestic violence shelters, one in Lakeland and one in Sebring; two crisis stabilization units, one in Lakeland, one in Bartow; a short-term adult residential treatment center; two group homes; and apartments.

To help get rapid intervention to individuals in need, the center also operates a 24-hour Mobile Crisis Response Team and hotline, which provides immediate intervention to individuals in need.

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August 2020