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Frequently Asked Questions

What insurances do you accept?

We accept Medicaid, Medicare, Tricare, Icare, Anthem, BCBS, WEA, United Health Care, Aetna, WPS, Trilogy, CCHP, Cigna, Common Ground, Molina, Cenpatico, Humana, Health EOS, MHS, Multiplan, PHCS, EAPs, Network Health, UMR, Chorus, and many others. You can call our office manager at 414-962-6764 or check with your insurance company to find out if we are in your insurance network. 

What can I expect at my first session?

Your first session is primarily a time of assessment in order to help you identify your concerns and begin formulating a treatment plan to address those concerns. The office manager will also ask you to sign forms related to providing your consent for treatment and will make a copy of your insurance card.

What is mental health therapy?

A therapy session typically lasts 45-50 minutes and provides an opportunity for you to meet one-to-one with a masters-level or doctoral-level therapist. At the first session the therapist will gather information about what your concerns are and get to know you. You and your therapist will work together to determine what your goals are (i.e., I want to feel less anxious) and put together a plan to work toward those goals. 

What if I'm not sure I need therapy?

Our providers can meet with you to discuss whatever challenges you might be facing to help you determine if therapy will be a good fit for you. Even if you have never had a mental health concern, you may find therapy useful in helping you feel less "stuck," finding ways to overcoming barriers to change, or getting a better understanding of yourself.

What is a psychological assessment?

A psychological assessment is different from therapy. During an assessment, the psychologist will gather information in a clinical interview, administer selected psychological instruments, and gather information from collateral sources to answer the referral question. It may last several hours, and at the end a written report is provided to the referral source with diagnostic impressions and recommendations. Sometimes therapists, schools, physicians, or attorneys will request a psychological assessment to help with differential diagnosis and recommendations. Psychological assessments are expensive because they require extensive training and specialized education in a doctoral psychology program. They can also be expensive because it takes many hours to score and interpret instruments that are purchased by the psychologist, and several more hours to write a comprehensive report as part of the medical record. Check with your insurance company to determine whether psychological evaluation services will be covered. Insurance typically will not pay for educational or legal evaluations. 

What if I do not want to use insurance?

We can provide you with fees for private pay, just call for details.

How do I get started?

Contact us at 414-962-6764 between the hours of 7:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. to speak with our office staff. Outside of those hours, you can leave a message with the office. Explain that you are interested in receiving services for yourself or other family members. You will be asked to provide some basic information. If you have insurance you will be asked for information available on your insurance card.  

What is the difference between a Psychologist and a Psychiatrist?

A psychiatrist has a medical degree and primarily evaluates the need for medication. A psychologist typically has a doctoral degree in psychology (PhD or PsyD), is trained to provide therapeutic interventions, and has specialized training to conduct psychological evaluations. Licensed psychologists, such as those at NSPA, are providers with a doctoral degree in psychology who are licensed by the state as psychologists.

What is an LPC or LCSW?

LPC stands for Licensed Professional Counselor and indicates a master's level clinician or a clinician with a doctoral degree who is accruing hours toward full licensure as a psychologist. LCSW stands for Licensed Clinical Social Worker and indicates a clinician with a master's degree in social work with training to provide clinical intervention services.

How long does therapy last?

Therapy may be only a few sessions or may last a longer time if that is what you and your therapist determine is in your best interest. 

How does confidentiality work?

You can give permission for your provider to share information about you, but otherwise what you discuss is between you and your provider. You might choose to have your provider release information to another therapist, a doctor, a school, your insurance company, or your case manager or attorney. Exceptions include court-ordered services and mandated reporting.

How will I know if my insurance will cover services at North Shore Psychotherapy Associates?

NSPA will call your insurance company and ask for benefits. We ask that you do the same. Please know your plan including your deductible, copay and coinsurance. Insurance companies may not cover forensic or educational evaluations, as they may not consider these to be medically necessary.

Telepsychology/COVID-19 Frequently Asked Questions

What is telehealth or telepsychology?

Telepsychology is defined, for the purpose of these guidelines, as the provision of psychological services using telecommunication technologies. For example, seeing your provider through an online format if one of you is not able to make it to the office.

Does my insurance cover telehealth?

As of 3/17/20, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services provided some guidance that provided more flexibility for services to be rendered during this situation. However, we are still unclear on some of the details because things have been changing so fast, and you may need to contact your insurance carrier to determine what is covered by your plan. 

Why is NSPA implementing telepsychology?

State and federal guidelines have limited large gatherings and are encouraging social distancing. Our waiting room is small, and we are doing our best to keep it clean and allow clients to have space. However, some clients are not able to get to the office, or do not feel comfortable coming in. We are trying to offer alternatives for care that are mindful of the needs of our clients, and the health of our community.

What about psychological assessments?

Because psychological assessments typically include sitting near the examiner and touching pens and pencils, blocks or puzzles, or other booklets and papers, you may want to hold off on this for now. We are postponing appointments for these evaluations out of an abundance of caution. 

What other resources can I access?

The American Psychological Association, National Alliance on Mental Illness, Mental Health America, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, National Institute of Mental Health, Forbes, PsychologyToday, and other agencies are providing information online or through podcasts about coping with the anxiety of what is happening in the world right now, and you may also find support through staying in touch with your friends and family in more creative and social distancing-friendly ways. Other resources include the Hopeline, COPE services, National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, Veterans Crisis Line.

Why do I keep getting voicemail when I call the office?

Our staffing is limited at this time, so most calls will go straight to voicemail. However, providers are checking their voicemails on a regular basis and contacting clients as soon as they are able. We truly appreciate your patience.

What do I need for telepsychology?

A phone or internet connection is required for most platforms. You will need to allow access to our phone or computer's microphone and camera (if it has one). In addition, you will need to find a place where you can maintain some privacy (shut the door, close the blinds) so that others do not overhear your conversation with your therapist.

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