Frequently Asked Questions
Answered by Clinical Director Chris Burt
What are the fees for counselling?
The fee for counselling is $120.00 per hour (+ GST). Typical sessions are one hour and the length and duration of service will be negotiated with your counsellor. If you have extended insurance coverage your insurance package may cover a portion of counselling. This will be explained during your no-charge initial phone screening assessment.
How do I know I'll get the right counsellor?
While the cornerstone to effective counselling is a trusting and respectful professional relationship, it is vital that your counsellor has training and expertise with your specific issue. As part of the initial assessment process our Clinical Director will conduct a brief phone interview to help understand and prioritize your specific needs and assign a counsellor who has the appropriate expertise. After a few sessions, should you feel that your counsellor is not a good 'fit', simply contact the Clinical Director to discuss an alternative counsellor.
Whom should I bring to counselling?
It is very common for people to call either on behalf of another family member or because they are having difficulty with a relationship or another member of the family. While each situation is unique, typically you should expect each person directly involved to be able to attend. They should also be aware of why they are coming and consent to being there and being part of the process. Exceptions would include children or members who have a diminished capacity. Children and youth may be invited into the process at a later time but it is often beneficial to begin with the primary adults.
How long will it take until I start to see improvement?
Each person's circumstances are different and as a result it is difficult to say for how long anyone will need to access counselling services in order to see change in their lives. Your counsellor will continually check in with you to ensure you are finding the service beneficial and respect that at any time you may disengage from the counselling process.
Is a counsellor the same as a psychologist or a psychiatrist?
Many people assume all of these professionals are the same. While they are all trained professionals who aim to help people improve their emotional and mental health, each profession has unique abilities, training, and professional focus.
Counsellors have both academic and professional training in engaging in therapeutic processes aimed at enhancing specific social, emotional and relational functioning for their clients. Counsellors are focused on finding solutions to a client's identified problem, and are trained in a variety of therapeutic methods that promote change to thinking, understanding and behaviour. Our counsellors hold memberships in a variety of professional counselling associations to ensure ethical services that meet a high level of professional standard.
Psychologists are members of a professional association (College of Psychologists of BC) with specific educational and training requirements, which typically include a Doctorate Degree and demonstrated professional competency. Psychologists do not prescribe medication but are trained to administer tests and assessments which help categorize mental, cognitive, and emotional capacity and functioning.
Psychiatrists are medical doctors with a specialty in mental health and mental illness. They focus on serving individuals with a specific, often diagnosable mental health issue. Psychiatrists can prescribe medication often necessary to help manage mental health symptoms.