Franklinton mental health clinic serving local needs

Published 12:40 pm Sunday, February 22, 2015

The goal of Washington Parish Behavioral Health LLC is to bring more affordable care to the community, according to its business partners.

The business, located at 915 Washington St. in Franklinton across from the Washington Parish Courthouse, opened on Jan. 19. Partners in the business hosted a grand opening on Friday. Owners include Marketing Director Mark James II, Office Administrator Stephanie Warren Thomas and Licensed Clinical Social Worker Monica Cruz.

“We wanted to so something where the owners are invested in the community and to get away from big business,” said Cruz, who has a master’s degree in social work from Tulane University and an undergraduate degree in social work from Southeastern Louisiana University. She formerly worked at Bogalusa Mental Health Clinic.

Services offered at the clinic include individual and group counseling, medication management, crisis intervention, community and psychiatric support and social skills training.

The clinic is open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday for children to adults. Helena Richard is the physician on staff.

“We are committed to help our community by serving individual needs,” Thomas said. “We’re local people who were born and raised in this wonderful community that want to help these families heal and restore relationships.”

Thomas graduated from Southeastern Louisiana in general studies. She operated her father’s business, Parish Eye Center, for many years.

James studied law at LSU and Loyola University He received his law degree from Loyola.

“We’re honored to have Dr. Richard,” James said.

The clinic has weekend and after-hours appointments available. The clinic can be reached by calling 985-322-2026.

The clinic has seen 60 patients since it opened.

“We have a sliding scale if people don’t have Medicare because we want it to be affordable for everyone,” Cruz said.