ACS, aims to alleviate the hardships of living

The island just welcomed Dr. Audrey Kan, a clinical psychologist, back, after years of being away, studying, working, gaining experience, with the goal of returning to her home-island to do her share in fixing it.

The way she tells it, when she was working in a psychiatric hospital in the US, she experienced people getting better, people who committed crimes, attempted suicide, she saw them improving and decided to learn as much as she can, master the profession, then go home to join forces with the local clinical psychologists to change things. She knew while the list of clinical psychologists here is short, at Respaldo, the list of help-seekers is long.

Check out Dr. Kan’s website for ACS: aruba clinical services, its very informative and user-friendly.

“We provide,” it says, “high-quality mental health care rooted in science, compassion and heart for adults, children, couples, and families. Our seasoned psychologist will make you feel welcome, understood, accepted, and empowered on your path to a life well-lived.”

Mental health has been a focal point of conversations in the past two years, post-pandemic, while brushed away as caprice or hypochondria before, it is now recognized as a disease in need of great attention, as much as any other medical condition, perhaps even more.

For the time being, Dr. Kan’s services are covered for clients who have AZV plus, but her services are available on the island, which is most important, also covered by a few other insurances, and you can always pay yourself.

What is the difference, I asked, between a psychologist and a clinical psychologist? The difference, Dr. Kan replied, is many years of extra schooling, as the clinical psychologist, is a medical specialist.

Dr. Kan reports that the first visit to her clinic entails a detailed intake where she has a candid and open conversation with her client, to determine the course of action, then they both decide on the best way of going about fixing what ails him/her/them, and why he/she/they feel the way they feel.

Trauma, any kind of trauma, big and small, real or perceived, prevents people from living a full and content life, and Dr. Kan is there to help clients sort things out, in a supportive, empathic environment. Even children, as young as four-years old, may be troubled by bullying, she explains, and suffer from performance-anxiety at school. Life isn’t easy, she concludes, and having someone on your side can make all the difference to you mental and physical health.

The clinic also provides assessments, of functioning and risks, etc., in legal, educational and inter-personal relationships. Dr. Kan hopes to be working with the courts, KIA, schools, sex offenders, people with suicidal ideation, her door in now open on Caya Punta Brabo 3.

Everyone can be helped, she says.

And we need help. I just heard via a friend that family doctors can no longer refer patients to psychiatric help if they are not in possession of a Dutch passport. In their efforts to save the DSZ, dienst sociale zaken, will only entitle Dutch passport holders, and the others will be denied mental, psychological support and guidance.

A very discriminatory policy. Just like AZV plus.

But ACS is here, and is available to help alleviate the hardships of living, in English, Spanish, Papiamento & Dutch.

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September 30, 2022
Rona Coster