What is a Provider Lead?

What is a Provider Lead?

Every Wednesday we gather in front of our computer screens to discuss the latest with Spring Connect, the official Spring Health provider community.

This past week, we spent less time on clinical leadership matters and more on relationship building. It’s great reinforcement for what we will do for the regional cohorts we lead. After all, as a Provider Lead team, we are geographically spread out across Connecticut, California, Wisconsin, Georgia, and Washington.

Together, we created a list of questions and held a lively discussion. Here’s what we uncovered:

Q: Why did you decide to become a therapist?

Carlos: “If it weren’t for those who took an interest in me and helped me develop as an individual I wouldn’t be where I am today. So I decided to dedicate myself to helping others become the best versions of themselves.”

Merraf: “I’ve always been really into psychology and how the human brain works. People just open up to me and I’ve always been fascinated by them.”

Q: What excites you about Spring Connect?

Jen: “I like the idea of being able to bridge gaps between what we do in practice versus what looks good in theory or on paper and how to overcome them or do things a bit differently.”

Megan: “We’re a community of providers that not only are helping people, but we’re helping each other.”

Kate: “Rather than attempt to move the needle with my private practice of 10 to 15 therapists, the thought of being able to do that with hundreds and thousands of therapists is obviously very appealing.”

Q: Why did you take on this Provider Lead position?

Jen: “As someone who is adopted, female, and of Asian descent with a science and quality assurance background, I have a lot of different perspectives. Providers can use that for their own growth and learning or find my cohort to be an additional safe space to talk about some of these things.”

Megan: “I’m a marriage and family therapist. I’m a licensed supervisor, a counselor supervisor. I have experience in non-profit organizations, private practice, and telehealth. I’ve also worked for a university in the accessibility and diversity, equity, and inclusion office. That brings a lot of different perspectives into my work and how I view therapy, patients, and providers.”

Q: From your perspective, what do therapists need to keep in mind to best serve clients?

Merraf: “When psychology terms were created, they did not take race and culture into consideration. I think because I am black and Ethiopian, I dive right in. I always ask about my clients’ childhood, their upbringing, and their religion or spiritually. One of the questions I ask is ‘how would you like me to incorporate that into therapy?’ Asking questions and not making assumptions about your client’s experience is going to go a long way in therapy.”

Jen: “I recognize that while parents might come to you for a child’s behavior or different things that are going on, ultimately you have to remember that every member of that family and their entire life experience matters. Culture and diversity, where they grew up, all of those pieces are important as well.”

Megan: “I really want to educate providers on how we can be advocates for our clients and write clear documentation to communicate what’s most beneficial for those who need workplace accommodations. I’m also excited to talk about co-parenting communication- specifically how parents can work on following court orders or putting their child before personal matters.”

Carlos: “I don’t know that we appreciate how much society and culture shapes the ability of men to manage their emotions effectively. My cohort will allow space for folks to explore those emotions, whether they be males or females, who are interested in knowing more about how men come to be.”

Kate: “Perfectionism and achievement are part of the cultural values many Americans have- from the factory line worker to the CFO at a tech company. We know this can cause anxiety in our patients. And as therapists, we face the same internal pressures. This is an area of interest for me and we could pay a little more attention to how it impacts therapy.”

We are excited to launch Spring Connect and create an engaging space for providers to grow personally and professionally. Here’s to a continued dialogue.

Want to join Spring Connect?

If you are a mental health clinician and want to learn more about Spring Connect, fill out this interest form.

The Provider Lead Team:

Merraf Abel, MS, MPH, LMFT is the Provider Lead for Spring Connect’s Western Cohort
Megan Bohinc PCC-S, LPC, MFT is the Provider Lead for Spring Connect’s Midwest Cohort
Jen Callen, LCSW is the Provider Lead for Spring Connect’s Midwest Cohort
Kate Murphy, LCSW is the Provider Lead for Spring Connect’s North and South West Cohort
Carlos Rivera LCSW, MBA, MPH is the Provider Lead for Spring Connect’s Northeast Cohort

November 12, 2021

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