INFORMATION ABOUT APPOINTMENTS & FEES
THOMAS N. DORSEL, Ph.D.
SC License #392
While the health and welfare of the client is the primary concern of psychotherapy, this objective is best served if the following overview of the therapeutic process is first understood:
Therapy sessions are generally scheduled on a weekly basis, although some circumstances may require more or less frequent visits. Cancellations are discouraged as they may disrupt the progress of therapy. However, if a cancellation is necessary, it should be done 24 hours in advance of the starting time of your appointment, or full payment will be expected for the missed session. If I have to be out of town, or will be otherwise unavailable at a regularly scheduled appointment time, I will provide you with similar notice. Any messages should be left at the telephone number provided above. Please leave the date/time of your call, as well as where I can call you back.
Fees and Insurance
Psychotherapy is provided at the rate of $75 per hour. If you feel you need to extend a particular therapy session beyond the usual hour, additional 20-minute segments are provided at $25 each. If psychological testing is necessary, each test has its own fee. Health insurance generally covers the services of licensed clinical psychologists to varying degrees, depending on your policy.
In order to keep expenses and therapy fees as low as possible, the billing and insurance procedure of this practice operates as follows: Payment is due on the day of each session. I will keep a receipt of your payments which you can have at any time to submit to your insurance company. The company should then reimburse you directly. The receipt that I give you is usually sufficient to attach to your insurance forms. However, I will also provide you with any extra information that you request for your particular insurance company.
Length of Therapy
The number of sessions varies from case to case. To give you some frame of reference, brief therapy may involve as little as 3 or 4 sessions, or it could extend to 20 sessions. On the other hand, long-term therapy may require 6 mos. to 2 yrs. to achieve its goals.
In any case there is flexibility, and the ending time is primarily up to you. When you feel like you are doing well enough to proceed on your own, just let me know and we will discuss it. The important thing is that you don't just disappear. We both need an opportunity to bring some closure to a therapeutic process that has involved a personal investment on the part of each of us.
Confidentiality is both an ethical and a legal responsibility for psychologists. Therefore, you can assume that anything you say, or even the fact that you are seeing me, will be kept confidential.
There are some exceptions to confidentiality, however, of which I must make you aware: (1) While South Carolina has a confidentiality law which gives you considerable protection regarding your privacy, the courts may still in rare instances require access to my files. I must obey the law, but even in these rare instances, I will do everything in my power to protect your privacy. (2) If you are unable to take care of yourself, or if you threaten to harm yourself or another person, I must take action to protect the involved parties (including you). (3) Protective Services must also be notified in cases of child abuse. The law affords the psychologist little latitude for discretion in such instances. (4) Lastly, if you ask me to provide information about you to a third party, I will, of course, provide you this service with your written consent.
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