Frequently Asked Questions

If you do not see your question listed here, please contact us and we will be happy to discuss it with you.

Do I need a referral?

You do not need a referral to schedule an appointment. Clients can be referred by a physician or other professional or they may be self-referred. We work closely with EAP/EFAP providers and insurance companies to provide services to many of our clients. Our services are reimbursable through many extended health plans. However, some extended health plans do require a physician’s referral before providing reimbursement of fees. Please check with your insurance provider to see if this is the case for you. For clients paying on their own we accept credit card, debit cards and cash. A receipt is provided upon payment.

How long is an appointment?

Sessions are 50 minutes in length.

What should I expect at my first appointment?

The first appointment is essential to forming a treatment plan and making sure that your needs match the training and expertise of the counsellor. This appointment also provides you with an opportunity to learn about your counsellor and make sure that you feel the counselling relationship will be comfortable and a good fit. We firmly believe that for counselling to be effective, there must be a fit in both counselling methods and personality.

During the first session, your counsellor will gather background information as well as information about your current situation. This is a great time to share documents that may be relevant to your current issues (ie. Report cards, doctor referral letter, previous assessments and/or diagnoses). The clinician will form a treatment plan tailored to your unique needs and circumstances. You may be asked to fill out brief questionnaires or assessment instruments in order to help the clinician gather information as efficiently as possible.

How much does it cost?

The rate for Psychology services is $180.00 per hour. This rate is set in accordance with the recommendation of the Saskatchewan College of Psychologists. The rate for Counsellors is $130.00. Many clients have extended health-benefits which may provide full or partial coverage for services. Please contact your insurance company to see if this applies to you.

Debit cards and Visa/Mastercard are accepted as payment methods. Some clinicians accept e-transfer. A receipt is provided upon payment.

When do I pay?

Payment is collected upon arrival for your appointment.

Are services Confidential?

All information that you provide, including session notes, questionnaires, assessment results and electronic messages are kept confidential. To further ensure confidentiality, we use an encrypted electronic data storage site that is HIPPA compliant. No third party can access your information without your written consent. In exceptional circumstances (ie. Safety issues, court orders), we may be required to break confidentiality. These circumstances will be reviewed with you at the beginning of your first session.

What if I need to cancel?

We require 24 hours notice to change or cancel an appointment. Appointments not cancelled within 24 hours will be billed. The balance of the missed appointment must be paid before a new appointment can be scheduled. Cancellation fees may be waived under exceptional circumstances. Please note: Many insurance companies do not cover the cost of missed or late cancelled appointments.

Can you prescribe medication?

We do not prescribe medication. Only a medical doctor can prescribe medication. If we feel that you may benefit from medication we will refer you to your physician to discuss whether this is an option for you.

How many times should I come?

We do not believe in a “cookie cutter” approach to counselling. Client needs are diverse and the length of time needed varies a great deal. Some clients seeking psychoeducation attend only one appointment to gain insight or understanding about a particular issue. Other clients seek help for very specific issues and require a minimal number of appointments. Still other clients may have more complex issues that require long-term support.

Clients who gain the most from counselling are those that are willing and engaged in the process and those who practice new skills both in session and in day-to-day life. We emphasize goal setting with our clients, right from the first session. In this manner progress can be monitored on an ongoing basis.

At your initial appointment, your clinician will discuss what they believe is a reasonable course of treatment depending on your unique situation.

What is the difference between a Registered Psychologist and a Counsellor?

A Psychologist is a professional trained in the assessment, diagnosis, and treatment of mental health issues. Psychologists are regulated by the Saskatchewan College of Psychologists. As regulated health professionals, Psychologists are required by law to provide services in a competent and professional manner.

Psychologists have the option of obtaining their APE at time of registration. This stands for Authorized Practice Endorsement which allows a psychologist to provide a formal diagnosis. All of the Registered Psychologists at East Plains Counselling & Assessment have their APE. Only Registered Psychologists can use the term “psychologist” in the province of Saskatchewan.

A counsellor is a professional trained to provide support and counselling. Counsellors can be registered with a number of regulating bodies. These regulating bodies ensure that counsellors perform ethical work and have relevant up-to-date training. Counsellors are not able to provide a formal diagnosis. However, at East Plains Counselling & Assessment our Counsellors work closely with a Registered Psychologist who can provide a diagnosis if this is appropriate.

East Plains Counselling & Assessment