Modern Minds, MUSC Health offer new, holistic approach to mental wellness

CHARLESTON, S.C. (Sept. 14, 2020) – MUSC Health and Modern Minds, a new Charleston-based adult mental health and wellness clinic, have launched a collaboration to offer a one-stop holistic approach to mental, emotional and physical wellness. The fully integrative health model engages with clients experiencing stress, depression and/or anxiety and leverages a team of psychologists, psychiatrists, licensed social workers and wellness mentors who work together to provide a comprehensive care solution. The effort seeks to move more people toward balanced wellness in all areas of their lives, addressing physical activity, nutrition, mindfulness, relationships, family and work. The Modern Minds team also provides specialized group therapy that focuses on panic disorder, social anxiety, mindfulness-based stress reduction and coping with COVID-19. Due to the pandemic, all Modern Minds individual counseling and group therapy sessions are available at both its downtown clinic, with proper precautions in place to prevent the spread of COVID-19, and via telehealth.

The clinic was founded and is supported with funding from the BEEMOK Family Foundation, a private charitable organization created by businessman Benjamin Navarro and his family. In creating the new clinic, Modern Minds and MUSC Health collaborated on how best to meet the needs of clients by taking the best of what the private and public sectors have to offer in addressing the growing need for innovative approaches to achieving mental wellness in today’s fast-paced modern world. 

“The new model we are using at Modern Minds takes into account the interconnectedness between mental and physical wellness issues. We work toward comprehensive, positive and lasting solutions that fit the needs and lifestyles of our clients –as individuals,” said Anne Marie Albano, Ph.D., Modern Minds executive director. “Together with MUSC Health, Modern Minds seeks to transform the traditional approach to mental wellness.” 

In addition to leading the Charleston clinic, Albano is a professor at Columbia University and a clinical psychologist known for her work and research regarding treatments for anxiety and mood disorders with a focus on the use of cognitive behavioral therapy. 

“The demands of daily life can sometimes become overwhelming for people –for lots of reasons,” said Kevin Gray, M.D., Modern Minds chief medical officer and an MUSC Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences professor and addiction sciences specialist. “We are well aware of our community’s need for a more comprehensive and thorough approach to addressing mental, physical and emotional wellness, and Modern Minds wants to fill that gap. This need has only intensified with the onset of the pandemic. Through the collaboration with Modern Minds, my MUSC colleagues and I are eager to engage in a new interconnected model of wellness to serve the people of our community.”  

According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, one out of every five adults in America experiences feelings of anxiety or depression. Only one-third of those people seek treatment. According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), there are numerous possible reasons that individuals cite for not seeking treatment. Societal stigma, shame, embarrassment and physical and financial barriers can all play a role in the decision not to seek treatment as well as the inability to find quality treatment. Many people struggling to maintain mental wellness are unable to find a therapist they connect with, or they encounter intolerable side effects associated with the medications they take.

When left untreated, mental health issues can worsen steadily and, often, rapidly. This can also lead to physical symptoms like unexplained aches and pains or headaches and gastrointestinal distress. Ongoing mental health issues can cause people to neglect their health, and chronic stress is associated with increased risk for heart attacks, stroke, obesity and premature death.  

Recognizing that these negative issues are more likely to surface during the pandemic, Modern Minds is offering "Coping with COVID" small-group therapy sessions beginning at the end of September. Sessions will be 90 minutes and led by psychologists and licensed clinical counselors. Individuals do not need referrals to sign up. Anyone experiencing concerns and stress related to the COVID environment or finding themselves more upset or disrupted than usual should inquire about participation. Those expressing interest will participate in a brief screening with a Modern Minds team member who will provide additional details about the program. Participation in these groups is not meant to replace or substitute for ongoing psychotherapy. 

To learn more about Modern Minds, including how to make an appointment, specific provider information and more, please visit


About MUSC Health

As the clinical health system of the Medical University of South Carolina, MUSC Health is dedicated to delivering the highest quality patient care available while training generations of competent, compassionate health care providers to serve the people of South Carolina and beyond. Comprising some 1,600 beds, more than 100 outreach sites, the MUSC College of Medicine, the physicians’ practice plan and nearly 275 telehealth locations, MUSC Health owns and operates eight hospitals situated in Charleston, Chester, Florence, Lancaster and Marion counties. In 2020, for the sixth consecutive year, U.S. News & World Report named MUSC Health the No. 1 hospital in South Carolina. To learn more about clinical patient services, visit

MUSC and its affiliates have collective annual budgets of $3.2 billion. The more than 17,000 MUSC team members include world-class faculty, physicians, specialty providers and scientists who deliver groundbreaking education, research, technology and patient care.