The Emotional PPE Project Connects Healthcare Workers with No-Cost Mental Health Services

The Emotional PPE Project was born shortly after the COVID-19 pandemic hit the U.S. In March 2020, founder Ariel Brown sent a text to a friend (and future co-founder), a program director at a hospital, asking how she could potentially support healthcare workers during this crisis. After a brief exchange, Brown began making moves. That same day, she sent out a form on social media stating that these dedicated individuals need mental health resources, asking if her network could help in any way. The response was overwhelming – a resounding “yes” from more than 60 licensed mental health professionals.

A month later, with the help of dozens of volunteers, from attorneys to engineers to designers, The Emotional PPE Project website was up and running, living out its mission to connect healthcare workers with confidential, no-cost mental health services.

You may be wondering how this small but mighty group decided on “Emotional PPE.” The name emerged from a term we heard often in 2020 and 2021: personal protective equipment, or PPE. Rightfully so, there was tremendous emphasis on physical safety. However, after months of exhaustion, these individuals deserved more than an unlimited supply of N95 masks, gloves, sanitizer, and gowns. Certainly, these items were necessary, but mental health support was put on the backburner, or completely absent, for far too long.

The Emotional PPE Project is meant to support anyone in the healthcare field that’s been impacted by the pandemic. It’s not just for those without insurance or an Employee Assistance Program. Regardless of job title or location, the process to get started is simple and seamless.
Once on the website, users seeking mental health support can select their state from a dropdown menu. From there, they’ll see a directory of licensed mental health practitioners who are able to provide no-cost services. Practitioners range in profession, from psychologists to licensed social workers (LSW) to psychiatrists. Users also have the option to further narrow their search for the perfect fit by utilizing filters that cater to specific languages or gender.

Thousands of individuals have taken advantage of these services thus far. Check out these testimonials from nurses, medical doctors, occupational therapists and pharmacists to get a better idea of how The Emotional PPE Project has helped them through extremely difficult times.
To learn more about The Emotional PPE Project, be sure to follow their Instagram and Facebook pages.

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