New name, expanded services
Dr. Eric Anderson is tired of his business being one of Merrill’s best-kept secrets. So, with the new year, he’s rolling out a new name and expanded services.
Anderson opened Central Wisconsin Psychological Services at 712 E. Second St. in Merrill in 2004. Now, Anderson is changing the name to Anderson & Associates Counseling and Psychologist Services. Along with the change in name, the clinic welcomes substance abuse counselor Evelyn Lee.
With a masters degree in substance abuse counseling and 8 years experience, Lee brings a new component to what Anderson & Associates has to offer.
“Evelyn adds a lot,” Anderson said. “She can do far more with alcohol and drug treatment, diagnosis and counseling.”
With Lee on board, Anderson & Associates is in the process of being recertified as a Alcohol and Other Drug Abuse (AODA) clinic.
“I have always wanted to serve Central Wisconsin and specifically the Merrill area,” Lee said.
With her depth of experience, Lee can see beyond the AODA issues to the underlying causes.
“When people come in with AODA issues, there are often underlying mental health concerns,” she said.
Lee holds a degree in psychiatry and was licensed to practice in another country. When she came to Wisconsin, she got involved with domestic violence counseling in Kewaunee. She completed her graduate studies in AODA and mental health at UW-Stout, and has continued to update her education. Lee has almost 30 years of combined experience helping people with their AODA and mental health issues.
Psychologists are not licensed to prescribe medication, but work closely with prescribing physicians.
“Some doctors recognize the need for ongoing mental health counseling,” Anderson said. “We provide treatment in concert with physicians. The combination of medication and therapy is far stronger than either one individually.”
Lee joins the Anderson & Associates team that includes Anderson, Rita Porter and Larry Woodward.
“When you look at the talent we possess here, it’s phenomenal,” Anderson said. “I don’t know of any agency in town that offers that same depth.”
Anderson & Associates is an outpatient mental health facility for the whole family, specializing in the treatment of anxiety disorders, depression, and stress, as well as issues specific to relationships, children, and parenting.
Counseling is all about the relationship between the patient and the therapist, Anderson noted.
“There is a stigma attached to both mental illness and alcohol and drug issues,” Lee added. “Here, the client is able to feel safe. They may feel judged, isolated and hopeless, but we want them to see they do have strengths. Accepting them helps them accept themselves.”
Anderson & Associates offers a sliding fee scale not subsidized through any outside agency. To Anderson, the rewards of helping others are greater than any financial gain.
“I try to select people to work in this clinic who have the same sense of personal commitment toward truly helping others,” he said. “We are in the helping profession, from that we receive a lot of intrinsic rewards.”
Staff is available Monday through Thursday, 9 a.m.- 6 p.m., with Fridays available by request as able. For more information, call 715-539-8080.