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Call It ‘Stealth Mental Health’

Some care for elders helps more without the label

The pandemic drew a lot of attention to young people's mental health. But older people have suffered, too. Many are struggling with loneliness, anxiety, or substance abuse.

Fewer than half of older adults who need mental health care get it, according to the National Council on Aging.

"One reason is that professionals are under-trained to treat the mental health needs of older adults," says Regina Koepp, a clinical psychologist based in Vermont, and the founder of the Center for Mental Health and Aging. "Many professionals feel quite incompetent and will say that they just don't treat older adults."

And that leaves would-be clients scrambling.

Another issue is insurance coverage and cost. Medicare doesn't reimburse all types of mental health provider — such as counselors — although that is due to change next year. And many therapists don't work with insurers.

Please select this link to read the complete article from NPR.

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