Magellan Health Services Inc. announced that as of Aug. 15 its subsidiary, Magellan Health Behavioral Health Inc., became one of several vendors to administer the Military & Family Life Counseling (MFLC) program, per a one-year base contract with the U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) with an option to renew for four more one-year terms.
Mike Hoskins, counseling program manager, Office of the Secretary of Defense, Military Community Outreach, says, “The MFLC program provides confidential, non-medical, short-term counseling to members of the active force, the National Guard and Reserves and the families up to 12 sessions per person, per issue at no cost.” He adds that services will be provided by counselors with a master’s or doctorate degree in social work, psychology or marriage and family therapy and are licensed or certified in a state, territory or the District of Columbia to practice independently.
Hoskins explains that the program provides for the needs of the military community before, during and after deployment with support offered on and off military installations, at family centers, child and youth programs, schools and youth summer programs. National Guard and Reserves may also take advantage of the counseling services at pre-deployment, deployment and reintegration events, he adds.
The main purpose of MFLC, according to Hoskins, is to prevent the development or exacerbation of mental health conditions that may detract from military and family readiness. “MFLCs address issues occurring across military life, such as relocation adjustment, separation, reintegration, relationship issues, parenting skills, communication, anger management, grief, stress, adjustment, deployment, life skills, coping skills, interpersonal skills and academic or occupational problems,” he says, noting that treatment for medical conditions, such as posttraumatic stress disorder, traumatic brain injury, depression, domestic violence, child abuse and suicidal behavior, is referred to other military or civilian agencies.
Hoskins says, “The overall benefits of the MFLC program are the availability of a confidential resource to receive assistance and highly flexible service delivery tailored to meet the needs of commanders, service members, families and the military community.”
Although the program, which was launched by the Dept of Defense in 2004, is offered throughout the United States, in four territories and in Washington, D.C., Magellan will administer services on most military bases in the continental United States.
By Phyllis Hanlon