Behavioral Health Services and Talk Therapy

At Neighborhood Family Practice, you are at the center of the care we provide. Your NFP doctor or nurse practitioner is your health and wellness partner. Our behavioral health staff, as well as nurses, patient advocates and medical assistants provide added support.

The behavioral health team at NFP offers talk therapy (also known as psychotherapy) services for existing pediatric, adolescent and adult patients. Psychiatry services (which use medication to help treat people) are available as well. These added behavioral health services allow us to treat all health
concerns – mind and body – of patients who currently receive care at NFP.

What is behavioral health? 

At some point in your life, you may be faced with difficult situations or challenges that can become hard to deal with on your own. When you’re at this point, a one-on-one assessment with an NFP behavioral therapist may be the first step toward helping you cope. The assessment will help our staff work with you to identify things that are causing problems in your life. They can then help you better understand or improve your situation or deal with things you can’t fix. Their goal is to provide you with tools to help you deal more successfully with difficult life situations.

Talk Therapy Can Help

Remember when you talked to a friend or family member about something that was bothering you and they really helped you work it out? Remember the time you tried it again and things didn’t work out quite as well? Times like that are when you need to talk to a trained healthcare professional. And that is when you can count on our behavioral health staff. We call this talk therapy. How is talk therapy different than talking with a close friend or family member? We tend to want to protect those we are closest to, so we don’t always tell them “the truth and nothing but the truth” about our feelings. For many people, it’s easier to share more with an open-minded person who is trained to listen and help. Talk therapists don’t take sides; they listen to your concerns without judgment or prejudice and can help you work out ways to deal with negative thoughts and feelings, challenging issues and life situations to make positive changes. Behavioral health and talk therapy is not “done” to you by someone else. Because you are directly involved, it can make a big difference when you feel you’ve lost control over parts of your life. 

How long does talk therapy take?

Individual talk therapy appointments typically last 30 to 45 minutes. Your first appointment may be longer as your therapist will ask questions to get to know you and your current situation better. Some patients come for just a few appointments to work on what’s bothering them. Others come for longer periods of time – for weeks, months, sometimes even for a year or more. Others come in and out of therapy over months and years, simply to touch base and make sure they are staying on the right track.

On-Site Integrated Medical and Behavioral/Mental Health Care

Integrated medical and behavioral/mental health care means that your physical health can affect your mental health and mental health concerns can affect your physical health. Treating both together results in significantly improved physical and behavioral health outcomes. At NFP, behavioral health staff are only a few steps away from the medical provider, right there when needed as a guiding hand for patients struggling with emotional issues. In order to make sure we are providing the behavioral health services that you need, we ask that you see your primary care provider at least three times before receiving a referral.

NFP’s team of licensed social workers and licensed professional clinical counselors have extensive education and training that qualifies them to help you deal with emotional issues and difficult life situations including:
• Trauma
• Physical and sexual abuse
• Alcohol and drug abuse/addiction
• Disabilities
• Depression, anxiety and mood problems
• Women’s health
• Grief/loss
• Relationship/family problems
• School or work issues
• Caring for family members
• Illness (including chronic conditions like diabetes)
• Sexual orientation/gender identity

Other members of the behavioral health team include nursing and psychiatry. Our psychiatric specialists work with you, your primary care provider and your talk therapist to evaluate if medication is needed to help treat difficulties you are having. Our behavioral health staff is dedicated to doing what is best for you, identifying problems and helping you to work on them. If you need additional, more specialized services, we will help you get to what you need. We have strong relationships with other providers of specialty services, so we can refer you outside of NFP for the best help available depending on your individual situation. We won’t just give you a name and phone number to call. We’ll be involved in the process, ensuring you are referred where you will get the care you need most.

 

Behavioral Health Providers

Peggy Keating, MA, MSW, LISW-S Vice President - Behavioral Health and Care Integration Peggy Keating received a master’s degrees in psychology and social work from Cleveland State University. She has been a practicing clinical social worker in Ohio for many years. She has had extensive training and experience working with issues related to trauma, sexual and physical abuse, addiction to alcohol and other drugs, disabilities, anxiety and depression. Her specialty areas include LGBT, women’s issues, and substance abuse/dependence.

Peggy Keating, MA, MSW, LISW-S
Vice President - Behavioral Health and Care Integration

Peggy Keating received a master’s degrees in psychology and social work from Cleveland State University. She has been a practicing clinical social worker in Ohio for many years. She has had extensive training and experience working with issues related to trauma, sexual and physical abuse, addiction to alcohol and other drugs, disabilities, anxiety and depression. Her specialty areas include LGBT, women’s issues, and substance abuse/dependence.

Rachel Berman, LISW-S Rachel Berman was born and raised in Buenos Aires, Argentina and immigrated to the USA in her teens. Her educational background is a B.A. in Psychology from Brooklyn College, New York and a Masters in Social Work from Case Western Reserve University. She has been working with adults and families for over thirty years. She has had the pleasure to work at NFP since 2000. Some of her special interests include collaborative work with the doctors on behalf of our patients, women's issues and mental health

Rachel Berman, LISW-S

Rachel Berman was born and raised in Buenos Aires, Argentina and immigrated to the USA in her teens. Her educational background is a B.A. in Psychology from Brooklyn College, New York and a Masters in Social Work from Case Western Reserve University. She has been working with adults and families for over thirty years. She has had the pleasure to work at NFP since 2000. Some of her special interests include collaborative work with the doctors on behalf of our patients, women's issues and mental health

Nancy Carver, LISW-S Nancy Carver works at NFP as a clinical social worker. She received a bachelor’s in social work from Methodist University and a Master of Social Work from East Carolina University. Nancy has over 10 years of experience as a social worker, case manager and care coordinator.

Nancy Carver, LISW-S

Nancy Carver works at NFP as a clinical social worker. She received a bachelor’s in social work from Methodist University and a Master of Social Work from East Carolina University. Nancy has over 10 years of experience as a social worker, case manager and care coordinator.

 
Holly Cliffel, LISW-S Holly Cliffel received a bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of Michigan and a Master of Science in Social Administration and Certificate of Non-Profit Management from Case Western Reserve University. Holly is a bilingual social worker with almost 20 years of experience in case management, community organizing and specialized training. Holly works at NFP as a behavioral health therapist.

Holly Cliffel, LISW-S

Holly Cliffel received a bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of Michigan and a Master of Science in Social Administration and Certificate of Non-Profit Management from Case Western Reserve University. Holly is a bilingual social worker with almost 20 years of experience in case management, community organizing and specialized training. Holly works at NFP as a behavioral health therapist.

Richard Hill, MD Psychiatry Dr. Rick Hill received both a Ph.D. in Neuroscience and an M.D. from Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine. He completed his internship and residency in Psychiatry at the Cleveland Clinic Foundation. He has served as Medical Director for Ravenwood Mental Health Center and as Chief Clinical Officer of Geauga County. He has many years of clinical experience treating adult patients. Among his many community activities, he serves as a member of the Medical Advisory Board for the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Greater Cleveland. Dr. Hill serves as a supervisor for staff physicians, fellows, residents and medical students and is a faculty Senior Clinical Instructor at Case Western Reserve University.

Richard Hill, MD Psychiatry

Dr. Rick Hill received both a Ph.D. in Neuroscience and an M.D. from Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine. He completed his internship and residency in Psychiatry at the Cleveland Clinic Foundation. He has served as Medical Director for Ravenwood Mental Health Center and as Chief Clinical Officer of Geauga County. He has many years of clinical experience treating adult patients. Among his many community activities, he serves as a member of the Medical Advisory Board for the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Greater Cleveland. Dr. Hill serves as a supervisor for staff physicians, fellows, residents and medical students and is a faculty Senior Clinical Instructor at Case Western Reserve University.

 
 
Paul Hirschel, LISW-S Paul Hirschel, LISW-S, joined Neighborhood Family Practice in 2016 as a behavioral health therapist. Paul graduated from the University of the Pacific with a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology and Case Western Reserve University with a Master of Science in Social Administration. Paul’s professional experience includes a counselor at Bellfaire-JCB, disaster action team volunteer at American Red Cross and several counseling positions at FrontLine Service.

Paul Hirschel, LISW-S

Paul Hirschel, LISW-S, joined Neighborhood Family Practice in 2016 as a behavioral health therapist. Paul graduated from the University of the Pacific with a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology and Case Western Reserve University with a Master of Science in Social Administration. Paul’s professional experience includes a counselor at Bellfaire-JCB, disaster action team volunteer at American Red Cross and several counseling positions at FrontLine Service.

Susan Knope, LISW-S Susan Knope, LISW-S, began working at Neighborhood Family Practice in 2012 as a behavioral health therapist. Susan holds a Bachelor of Social Work from the University of Wisconsin and a Master of Social Work from Loyola University, Chicago. Prior to joining NFP, Susan worked for over 20 years as an intake specialist, counselor, substance abuse specialist and program planning specialist. In her most recent position she served as the clinical director for the Women’s Center of Greater Cleveland.

Susan Knope, LISW-S

Susan Knope, LISW-S, began working at Neighborhood Family Practice in 2012 as a behavioral health therapist. Susan holds a Bachelor of Social Work from the University of Wisconsin and a Master of Social Work from Loyola University, Chicago. Prior to joining NFP, Susan worked for over 20 years as an intake specialist, counselor, substance abuse specialist and program planning specialist. In her most recent position she served as the clinical director for the Women’s Center of Greater Cleveland.

Maryann Kuzila, LPCC Maryann Kuzila, LPCC, began working at Neighborhood Family Practice in 2013 as a behavioral health therapist. She previously worked at Recovery Resources as a mental health assessor, clinical therapist, group facilitator and alcohol and drug therapist. Maryann has over 15 years in the field and holds a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Cleveland State and a Master of Arts in Counseling and Human Services from John Carroll University.

Maryann Kuzila, LPCC

Maryann Kuzila, LPCC, began working at Neighborhood Family Practice in 2013 as a behavioral health therapist. She previously worked at Recovery Resources as a mental health assessor, clinical therapist, group facilitator and alcohol and drug therapist. Maryann has over 15 years in the field and holds a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Cleveland State and a Master of Arts in Counseling and Human Services from John Carroll University.

Lauren McGowan, LPCC-S Lauren McGowan started with Neighborhood Family Practice in 2015 as a behavioral health therapist. Lauren has worked with a diverse range of individuals at Community Assessment and Treatment Services, Mental Health Services, Compass Rose Center and The Attention Center. She also taught masters-level students for several years as an adjunct professor at Cleveland State’s Masters in Counseling (CASAL) program. Lauren holds a bachelor’s degree from John Carroll University and a Master of Arts in Counseling from Cleveland State University.

Lauren McGowan, LPCC-S

Lauren McGowan started with Neighborhood Family Practice in 2015 as a behavioral health therapist. Lauren has worked with a diverse range of individuals at Community Assessment and Treatment Services, Mental Health Services, Compass Rose Center and The Attention Center. She also taught masters-level students for several years as an adjunct professor at Cleveland State’s Masters in Counseling (CASAL) program. Lauren holds a bachelor’s degree from John Carroll University and a Master of Arts in Counseling from Cleveland State University.

Siobhan Malave, LISW-S Siobhan Malave is a behavioral health therapist at Neighborhood Family Practice. Siobhan is a graduate of Case Western Reserve University’s Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences. She has more than ten years experience working with children and adults.

Siobhan Malave, LISW-S

Siobhan Malave is a behavioral health therapist at Neighborhood Family Practice. Siobhan is a graduate of Case Western Reserve University’s Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences. She has more than ten years experience working with children and adults.

Sue O'Brien, PMHCNS-BC Sue O'Brien began serving at Neighborhood Family Practice as a behavioral health clinical nurse specialist in 2014. She received a bachelor’s degree and a Master of Science in Psychiatric Mental Health Nursing from the University of Rochester. Sue previously worked at University Hospitals and Recovery Resources, treating mental health issues.

Sue O'Brien, PMHCNS-BC

Sue O'Brien began serving at Neighborhood Family Practice as a behavioral health clinical nurse specialist in 2014. She received a bachelor’s degree and a Master of Science in Psychiatric Mental Health Nursing from the University of Rochester. Sue previously worked at University Hospitals and Recovery Resources, treating mental health issues.

 
Annie Slota Annie Slota received a bachelor’s degree in sociology from John Carroll and a Master of Social Work from Cleveland State University. Annie has worked in social services and community development for over 15 years. She currently serves as the behavioral health linkage coordinator at Neighborhood Family Practice.

Annie Slota

Annie Slota received a bachelor’s degree in sociology from John Carroll and a Master of Social Work from Cleveland State University. Annie has worked in social services and community development for over 15 years. She currently serves as the behavioral health linkage coordinator at Neighborhood Family Practice.

Lacresha Rox, Psychiatric CNP Lacresha Rox, CNP earned a Master of Science in Nursing from Kent State University and a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Chamberlin College of Nursing. She is part of Neighborhood Family Practice's Behavioral Health team. Lacresha enjoys helping others feel their best and works to help her patients live well, physically and mentally.

Lacresha Rox, Psychiatric CNP

Lacresha Rox, CNP earned a Master of Science in Nursing from Kent State University and a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Chamberlin College of Nursing. She is part of Neighborhood Family Practice's Behavioral Health team. Lacresha enjoys helping others feel their best and works to help her patients live well, physically and mentally.