Sasha Zagoloff, PhD, LP, wears many hats as both a psychiatrist at University of Minnesota Physicians Behavioral Health Clinic for Families, and as a faculty member with the University of Minnesota’s Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences. Dr. Zagoloffs passion is treating children who have experienced trauma, as well as teaching future clinicians the best ways to deliver mental health care. She is motivated to help train more licensed psychologists to meet high demands for child and adolescent therapists. As a training clinic, the licensed psychologists guide learners as they master evidence-based therapies for helping children and adolescents with anxiety, depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder and more.
As an organization, M Physicians is committed to top-tier medical standards while also training future healthcare leaders. Zagaloff embodies this mentality to the fullest extent and is motivated to help train more licensed psychologists to meet high demands for child and adolescent therapists.
A huge point of pride for Zagoloff is that she and other clinic staff are deeply involved in research, and they routinely incorporate the latest evidence-based practices into their work with trainees and patients. Being closely connected to the University’s Institute for Translational Research in Children’s Mental Health is a key factor in these efforts.
There are tremendous benefits to children and families to be seen by a doctoral candidate, Zagoloff notes. They are usually the most current on the latest research, protocols, and practices, and they are being closely supervised and counseled by licensed psychologists on providing the best care.
Zagoloff isn’t taking new patients except for children experiencing trauma, because she now devotes significant time to preparing doctoral candidates for practice. That way, she expands the reach of her expertise to as many children as possible. “If I spend four hours in the clinic, then I help four families. But if I spend four hours with four different trainees, together we can help 16 families,” she says. “That’s one way to address unmet needs, and even with us, that need is immense.”
She couldn’t be happier that through her and trainees’ efforts, about 40 new children and teens will have access to much-needed mental health services each year at the University. “I really care about kids who are struggling,” she adds. “I want to figure out why they are struggling and help them and their families get their lives back on track.”