The UA Pat Walker Health Center Counseling and Psychological Services launched a website earlier this semester aimed at providing specialized counseling for students needing long-term treatment.
The new system, a collaboration between CAPS and a website called Thriving Campus, offers counseling in a wide variety of psychological practice areas, said Zac Brown, the PWHC assistant director of communications.
These practice areas range from gender identity and sexual orientation to impulse control and self harm, according to Thriving Campus.
CAPS traditionally used a Microsoft Word document as a database for local community counselors, but this system became difficult and inefficient to maintain, PWHC clinical case manager Melissa Atkinson said in an email.
The Thriving Campus database allows UA students, faculty and staff to select customized treatment options to meet their needs, Brown said.
CAPS counselors provide limited-time counseling for as many students as possible, but the database can provide more long-term options for students, faculty and professors, Brown said.
Students can go to the health center for issues in personal relationships, Brown said.
When building the database, CAPS officials reached out to counselors and health providers who had worked with the UofA before, Brown said.
CAPS does not provide students the option to use their own health insurance when utilizing CAPS counselors because the fee is included in tuition, Brown said.
The CAPS resources covered by the student health fee include 24-hour mental health emergency care, initial assessments, wellness outreach initiatives, group therapy sessions and sexual assault counseling, prevention and advocacy services, according to the Pat Walker Health Center.
Using a private counselor might enable insurance providers to work with the counselor, because most insurance providers require an expensive cost for coverage, Brown said.
Students can access CAPS’ online resources on the UA Thriving Campus website.