LCSW Jill Frizzell Brings Therapy To Where It’s Needed – December 1, 2011

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Kevin L. Hoover

Eye Editor

ARCATA – If you’re in need of professional counseling – maybe a senior who can’t navigate downtown parking or make it up the stairs to Jill Frizzell’s office, fret not – she will come to you.

Frizzell, a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW), has opened her new practice in a bright, welcoming office across from the main fire station on Ninth Street. It’s well-stocked, but not cluttered, with things to make a client feel comfortable – art, plants, diplomas, even board games for younger visitors.

Nice as it is, it’s also her launching pad for field forays to homebound individuals who could benefit from professional care. Frizell believes it’s a neglected niche. “Where is the need and who is underserved?” she asks, noting that “very few therapists are interested in doing home visits.”

Jill Frizzell, LCSW

Frizzell sees clients of all ages, though senior citizens are an emphasis. It takes special skills to address their late-life issues. These include loss of friends, depression, isolation, bereavement and illness-related stress and anxiety. “A lot of times there’s a specific event that brings people in,” she said.

Sometimes older individuals resist helpful therapy because of generational conditioning and taboos. In times past, Frizzell said, “people were taught, you keep it in your family.”

Or they may not understand the role of a therapist. “Maybe they feel we’re going to tell them what to do, or judge,” Frizzell said.

It can be a missed opportunity for relief, especially since the assistance may be covered by insurance. “LCSWs are among the providers who can accept Medicare,” Frizzell noted.

After receiving a referral from one of the local agencies which assist seniors, or a direct contact, Frizzell will seek to overcome unnecessary barriers to progress. Once rapport is established and the client is comfortable and assured of confidentiality, the person’s main issues are identified and goals set.

“It differs for every person,” she said. “It can take time to develop rapport and trust.”

While specializing in seniors, Frizzell also works with children, teens and adults.

A 2004 graduate of the Cal State Long Beach Social Work program via Humboldt State’s Distance Learning, Frizzell is skilled in contemporary techniques and approaches. She has special training in forensic social work, which involves evaluations of children in child custody cases.

For children, play therapy can be useful. For teenagers, art can be a pathway to progess in dealing with peer and parent issues.

“I enjoy working with everyone,” she said. “I have lots of experience with youth and families.”

Her geographical range is comparably broad. “I’m open to all Humboldt County,” she said, including Hoopa and Willow Creek.

Contact Jill Frizzell, LCSW, at 632 Ninth St., Suite A4, and at (707) 362-1709.