What to expect on your first visit:
It can be difficult not only to call a therapist for the first time, but also to imagine coming to the office and beginning a psychotherapeutic relationship. I hope the following information will make your first visit feel more comfortable.
Setting up an appointment/paperwork:
When you call me at (615) 386-3333 to request an appointment, my receptionist will take down your contact information and will ask for a few words (e.g., anxiety, depression, relationship issue) about why you are seeking therapy. I will then call you back, ask you to elaborate a little about your concerns and will ask whether you have any initial questions for me. If we agree to a first meeting, I will ask you to arrive approximately 15 minutes early to fill out the initial paperwork. My paperwork requests additional contact information, whether we will be filing with insurance for you, and your consent to enter into a psychotherapeutic relationship. If we are filing insurance, my receptionist will make a copy of your insurance card.
When your appointment time arrives, I will meet you in the waiting room and show you to my office. I will then generally ask you to share your reasons for seeking therapy at this time. This appointment is an opportunity for me to begin to get to know you and develop an understanding of what brings you to treatment. Hopefully, you also begin to get a sense of me and how I work. At the end of the session (which is 45 minutes), I will tell you whether I believe that I can help you, and will invite any questions you may have for me. I will give you a document which outlines my approach to psychotherapy and my office policies, and will ask you to sign it and return it to me at the second session. Generally, in the second and subsequent sessions, I will continue to gather a detailed history of your concerns and we will be discussing together what will be most helpful to you.
Fees and insurance:
Your health insurance company may provide coverage for out-of-network mental health providers, though in most cases there is a deductible to be met first. During or after your first appointment, if you want to use your insurance, my receptionist will contact your insurance company for details about your mental health coverage. She can file the insurance for you, if you wish. My fee for psychotherapy is $175 per session. I do see some individuals at a reduced rate. Payment is due at the time of service. My office can accept payment by cash, check, Visa/Mastercard, or by your Health Savings Account debit card.
As I am a psychologist and not a medical doctor, I cannot prescribe medication. I do practice with an excellent psychiatrist, Vedavyasa Biliyar, M.D. I often refer to him or to other psychiatrists in the community in whom I have confidence. I work closely with them to coordinate your care.
I can be contacted by email (email@example.com) or by calling my office (615) 386-3333. If you need to reschedule an appointment, it is generally best to call the office.