#306, 638 - 11 Ave. SW

phone 403.861.0164 carolynclaire.ca@gmail.com

FAQ

1. How much does a therapy session cost?

You will be billed at the rate of $190 for a 60 minute therapy session whether it is for an individual, family or couple. This rate is suggested by the Psychologists’ Association of Alberta.

 

10. How many sessions are required?

Therapy is individual to each person and the number of sessions required is dependent on many factors including: the nature of the concerns brought to therapy, the complexity of the issues, the amount of work completed outside of sessions, and the motivation to make changes. At any point in time you have the right to withdraw from therapy.

Usually I see people for a one hour session once every two weeks. Sometimes at the start of working together people prefer to see me weekly in order to get some traction started in the change process. It is up to you to decide how frequently you would like to attend therapy.

11. How do I choose which psychologist to work with? What should I consider?

Choosing a psychologist is an important decision. It is important to feel a comfort and “fit” with the psychologist you are working with. Having a good relationship with your psychologist can help establish the sense of safety sometimes necessary to create change. Research indicates that one of the most significant factors found to influence positive therapy outcomes is a strong therapeutic relationship where the client feels understood and respected by the psychologist.

I encourage clients to ask a potential psychologist some questions before making an appointment to help determine whether the psychologist will be of help. You may want to make sure that the psychologist you choose has experience in the area you need support in and uses an approach that fits for you. It is important that you feel you can be open and ask questions and give feedback to psychologist.

In order to assist you in making the decision to begin working with me, I offer a free 25 minute consultation that can be conducted in person or over the phone.  Please note that this consultation is not a therapy session, rather it is an opportunity for you to gather information about how I might understand your issue, resources I might know about, and what I have learned about your issue based on working with other clients with similar issues.

12. How do I make an appointment for a free consultation?

If you are interested in booking a consultation you can contact me by email carolynclaire.ca@gmail.com or phone 403.861.0164.

Please note that this consultation is not a therapy session, rather it is an opportunity for you to gather information about how I might understand your issue, resources I might know about, and what I have learned about your issue based on working with other clients with similar issues.

2. Am I able to get therapy fees reimbursed by my health care benefits?

Session fees may be reimbursable in whole or in part by Extended Health Care Plans, such as Blue Cross, that offer coverage for “psychology”, “psychotherapy” or “counselling.” Many companies and organizations have employee assistance programs or health spending accounts which also provide coverage.    I will provide a receipt for this purpose. Contact your insurance company to enquire about the terms of your policy.

Additionally, Psychological services may be used as a Tax Deductible Medical Expense.

3. How do I get started?

If you are interested in working with me, please contact me by phone or email to arrange for a short intake phone interview. This phone interview is an opportunity for me to assess whether I can be of help to you, and for you to ask questions and get a sense of who I am.  Assuming we both feel that we can work together, we will then book our first in-person therapy session.

4. How do I pay for my appointment?

Payment is made at the end of each session by cash, cheque, electronic funds transfer or credit card.

5. What should I do if I need immediate help because I am in crisis or having an emergency?

I am sorry that I am not able to offer immediate emergency care. In case of crisis or emergency, please call the Distress Centre  at 403-266-4357, visit an urgent care centre (South Calgary Health Centre or Sheldon Chumir Health Centre) or visit the emergency centre of your closest hospital.

6. How does therapy work?

Therapy or counselling or psychotherapy is a collaborative endeavor between you and your psychologist. To gain an understanding of the nature of the concerns that brought you to therapy, I will first ask you a series of questions about the problem or symptoms you are experiencing such as when the problem started, when it is most problematic, and what has been helpful in managing it. Information about your family background, present circumstances, and current relationships is also helpful. I find that a good information gathering conversation is also helpful to the client in gaining insight into their problem/situation. Typically then, I work with my client together to create a strategy to make changes and minimize the influence of the problem in their life. For some people, creating change arises naturally after gaining insight and understanding into the problem. For other people, the problem demands creating meaningful change across several life domains. Change can be difficult, so the speed at which change takes place will be up to you.

7. What are the risks and benefits of therapy?

When investing time, energy, and money in the process of therapy, it is important to understand the associated risks and benefits. While therapy has been shown to be effective in helping people deal with a range of issues, there is no guarantee that therapy will be effective for you. However, it is well established that the factors that make therapy effective are a good relationship with your psychologist and your motivation to create change. A second risk to be aware of is that over the course of therapy painful emotions or memories can be evoked that can be upsetting. This is often a normal part of the healing process, and when emotions and memories are acknowledged and dealt with collaboratively, there will be improvement over time.

8. How is my privacy protected?

What you share with me during your therapy sessions is treated with respect for your privacy and is considered confidential; I would not release information about you to anyone without your written consent. The only exceptions to this practice are:

  • If you share information with me that leads me to believe that you or another person is at imminent risk of serious harm,
  • If you share information with me that leads me to believe that you know or suspect that a child (17 and under) or dependent adult is being abused or neglected,
  • If you become involved in a court case and your therapy records are subpoenaed by a court of law,
  • If you are under 18 years of age, your parents have the right to information that we have discussed in session, unless they have agreed to grant you some privacy.

If you decide you want me to share information about your sessions with someone (example: your doctor), the only way I would share information is if you signed a release of information.

9. Is therapy right for me? Does seeking help mean that I have a mental illness?

Life can be very challenging at times and seeking help by seeing a psychologist can be an important way to make change. A psychologist can offer you an impartial perspective on your situation, or can offer you new tools to assist you in handling your situation, or assist you in gaining greater perspective of your situation. I believe that therapy can be an important tool to help people get the most out of their lives. Therapy is right for anyone who wants to live their best life by taking responsibility for their life, creating greater self-awareness, and taking steps towards making the desired changes in their lives. If you are unsure whether therapy might be helpful for you, please contact me  and we can discuss your concerns.