HOW DOES BILLING & PAYMENT WORK?
What is the cost of counseling or therapy?
Therapy sessions are billed at a rate of $150 per hour. This is the rate recommended by our fraternal organization, the Association of Psychologists of Nova Scotia (APNS). Please be aware that therapy sessions are billed on a 50-minute hour. This means that while we meet for 50 minutes, you are billed for 60. The ten minutes at the end is still your time, which I will use to write notes related to our session, including therapeutic impressions and treatment planning. I also ensure that I take at least 5-10 minutes before each session to review those notes, as it might be a week or two, or even longer, between appointments. This is standard practice within the profession and is the most efficient use of billable time.
Payment must be made either just before or after each session. Please be aware that MSI does not cover the costs of seeing a Psychologist, though many people will have insurance coverage through 3rd party providers, such as Blue Cross, Green Shield, Manulife, Great West Life, Sun Life, and so on. Please take the time to check with your individual or family plan with regard to coverage and reimbursement.
Do you offer direct-billing?
At the present time, my office only offers direct-billing for therapy invoiced to the following agencies:
- Department of Veterans Affairs
- Halifax Regional Police
- Canadian Forces Health Services
- Halifax Regional Fire and Emergency Services
- Health Services Employee Assistance Plan
It is not uncommon for non-physician service providers to offer direct-billing. For example, many dentist, physiotherapist, and chiropractor offices will often provide direct-billing to insurance providers such as Blue Cross. One of the reasons they can do so is because these practices tend to be larger and the nature of their work and business model allows them to be more profitable. Most psychologists, for example, will only see about 5-6 clients per day, whereas physiotherapists may see two or three clients at the same time and many more clients throughout the day. At the present time, I am not aware of any psychology practices that offer direct billing to insurance providers. In the future, we may be in a position to change our policy, but for now we regret that we are not able to accommodate direct-billing in the majority of cases.
Do you offer Pro-Bono Services?
Although I have a sliding scale and pro bono policy for clients who do not have insurance coverage and cannot afford my regular fee, these appointment slots are very limited and are typically triaged after being wait-listed. Please contact my office for more information.