Meet a Lucet Care Navigator | LaToya Mendizabal

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By LaToya Mendizabal, Care Navigator

Lucet Cares: Employee Spotlight

One of the core tenets behind Lucet’s mission of improving behavioral health access and quality is that a human-to-human element is critical. Lucet relies on sophisticated technology to make faster and more appropriate care possible, but recognizes that guiding members through their behavioral health journey is most effective with a member-first approach.

The dedicated employees at Lucet are our biggest asset — from those in clinical and member-facing roles to those in technology, marketing, finance, administration and many other functions. Now, we’d like you to meet the passionate people who make Lucet what it is.

We sat down with LaToya Mendizabal, a care navigator and key team member in identifying and following up with those in need of care.

Tell us about your background and how it prepared you for your current role.

I’ve worked in behavioral health for more than 13 years, across the acuity spectrum and from birth to geriatrics. My first role in my behavioral health journey was in caring for children, which included licensing for foster care and adoptions. From there, I moved into an intake clinician role for many years where I assessed needs and assisted people in getting their behavioral health services in Community Mental Health. Prior to joining Lucet, I worked in the integrated care setting with a focus on mental health and physical health, primarily assisting providers. Thanks to my wide range of experience, I have a unique point of view on mental health care.

What is your role at Lucet? What important piece of the puzzle do you bring to the company?

I am a care navigator. My primary goal is to assist people in connecting to care. My team focuses on the population of people who may have had an initial assessment and never followed through on appointments, or those who may have identified any initial symptoms of anxiety and/or depression while being evaluated by a medical provider. I help eliminate any barriers that stand in the way of members getting back into care, or maybe for some, accessing care in the first place.

LaToya Mendizabal

“Through Lucet’s technology, we can take away the hassle of scheduling the right provider and appointment for our members. That moment when people realize you’re able to help them access the care they need is one of the best feelings ever.”

LaToya Mendizabal – Care Navigator

What was the most memorable member experience you’ve had since working with Lucet? How were you able to help?

I reached out to a member who was stressed while taking care of her ill husband. She admitted that she was experiencing some major anxiety and that she was interested in receiving help. However, she had no idea how to start that process, where to go, or if she would have time to even engage in the services she needed. In our conversations, she greatly appreciated that I acknowledged and validated her feelings during a stressful time when it was difficult to take care of her husband and herself. I was able to schedule a virtual appointment so that she could address her concerns without the worries of being away from her husband as she continued to care for him. Through Lucet’s technology, we can take away the hassle of scheduling the right provider and appointment for our members, which greatly alleviates stress for those struggling to book an appointment on their own. That moment when people realize you’re able to help them access the care they need is one of the best feelings ever.

What are your personal hopes for the field of behavioral health care?

My hope is that the stigma and negative connotations surrounding mental health fade away. No one should be judged for having a diagnosis, wanting support or needing medication to be well. If a person has a heart condition, they are encouraged to seek treatment that would achieve a higher quality of life. Nobody would judge them for using medications to manage their symptoms. Mental health should be the same. I hope more people seek out mental well-being through treatment, and that Lucet can be part of creating a supportive environment to do so.

To learn more about how our team utilizes smart technology to connect members to care, visit here.

LaToya Mendizabal is a care navigator at Lucet, The Behavioral Health Optimization Company.

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