This week’s edition of Medicine Monday focuses on a different kind of health: mental health. For over 100 years, the Clifford Beers clinic in New Haven has served the holistic mental health needs of Connecticut children and families.
In the early 20th century, mental illness was treated almost exclusively through long-stay psychiatric hospitals. Although modern inpatient psychiatric care is a viable option in some cases, Clifford Beers founder Clifford Whittingham Beers believed that many patients would benefit from the comfort and stability of remaining at home while receiving periodic care in a nearby community setting. When he established Clifford Beers in 1913, it was the first outpatient mental health clinic in the country.
Since then, Clifford Beers has grown to provide care coordination, in-home family interventions, intensive outpatient programs and other specialized services to over 6,000 children and adults each year. During the COVID-19 pandemic, Clifford Beers has been operating Reach Out Connecticut, a free telehealth line that residents can call for emotional support and connections to resources.