1. What is your therapy approach?
My approach is interactive and problem-focused. Although I will not tell you what to do, I will offer feedback and support to help you sort out your feelings, explore your options, and develop new skills.
2. What should I expect at the first session?
The first session, which usually runs at least an hour, is an opportunity for me to gather a lot of information about you and your particular problems and goals. You will tell your story; I will ask many questions; and by the end of the session, I will share my impressions and offer recommendations for therapy. If you wish, we will also schedule some additional appointments.
3. How do I pick a therapist who is right for me?
Choosing a therapist is avery personal matter. It is most important that you select a person with whom you feel comfortable. Most people want to work with a therapist who is not only experienced and credentialed, but also empathic. You want to feel as if the therapist “gets” you.
4. How often will I need to come and how long will I be in therapy?
In general, I suggest that you come to sessions on a weekly basis, at least initially, to “get the ball rolling”. Clients who make a commitment to the process typically feel better and make progress more quickly. It is difficult to predict the exact length of therapy at the outset, but we will certainly discuss this during our first session.
5. Do you handle insurance?
Yes. I am a participating provider in the Blue Cross and Blue Shield (BCBS) network of Illinois and Massachussetts. If you are covered by BCBS, I will verify your benefits before our first session and collect your co-pay at the end of each session. Then I will bill BCBS for the remainder.
If you are covered by another insurance company, I will be glad to verify your benefits, but you will need to pay me out-of-pocket, and then collect any reimbursement from your insurance company.
It is very important to obtain the following information from your insurance company:
(1) How many therapy sessions are covered per calendar year?
(2) Is there a pre-existing condition clause?
(3) Do I have to meet a deductible?
(4) Is pre-certification required?
(5) Is there a co-payment per visit?
(6) How do I submit claims?
6. What are your office hours?
In my Chicago office, I have daytime, evening, and some Saturday hours. I am in my Melrose, MA location 1-2 times a month and see clients on Monday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.
7. Do you offer any remote sessions?
Yes, I do provide telephone therapy and online therapy via VSEE, which is private and secure. However, it is important to note that very few insurance companies will reimburse for these services, so you will need to pay out-of-pocket.
8. Do you prescribe medication?
No, only a physician can do that. I do work closely with several psychiatrists and can facilitate referrals, if you are interested.