Common Questions

Do you accept insurance? How does insurance work? 

We accept all Major Insurances including Blue Cross, Medicaid (Denali Kid Care), AETNA and Tricare to determine if you have mental health coverage, the first thing you should do is check with your insurance carrier. Check your coverage carefully and find the answers to the following questions:

  • What are my mental health benefits?
  • What is the coverage amount per therapy session?
  • How many therapy sessions does my plan cover?
  • How much does my insurance pay for an out-of-network provider?
  • Is approval required from my primary care physician?

Also, many of our services may be covered under your medical coverage, whether or not you have mental health coverage.  If you have questions or would like a list of commonly used billing codes, please contact us.

Is psychiatric care confidential? 

In general, the law protects the confidentiality of all communications between a client and mental health professional. No information is disclosed without prior written permission from the client.

However, there are some exceptions required by law to this rule. Exceptions include:

  • Suspected child abuse or dependent adult or elder abuse (The provider is required to report this to the appropriate authorities immediately).
  • If a client is threatening serious bodily harm to another person, the provider is required to notify the police.
  • If a client intends to harm himself or herself, the provider will make every effort to work with the individual to ensure their safety. However, if an individual does not cooperate, additional measures may need to be taken.

What can a psychiatrist do for me?

A Psychiatrist is a certified medical professional that specializes in the diagnosis, treatment, and management of mental illness and psychological problems.  A Psychiatrist has completed medical school, in addition to at least four years of training in the field.  Psychiatrists are not only trained to diagnose and manage mental illness but are also adept at providing psychotherapy.  Certain specializations within Psychiatry require additional years of training and qualification.  Within the profession, each Psychiatrist has specific areas of interest and specialization but has the skills to provide treatment from multiple approaches.  

What will happen during my first appointment?

We will meet with you for an initial psychiatric evaluation with one of our providers.  Initial appointments are typically scheduled with a PA or MD.  During this appointment, we will gather some information such as your history, symptoms, and family dynamics and all family members are invited.  Depending on you, your child's and/or family's unique needs a second appointment will either be scheduled with a PA or MD for follow up.  By the end of your child's second or third appointment, a long-term plan of care for the patient will be created.  This plan is made with input from the provider, the child or adolescent and their family, as well as any other providers currently providing care for the patient.

Will my treatment be kept confidential?

We will not reveal any information regarding what happens within the work that we do together unless you have signed the Release of Information form.  In the instance that you are in danger of harming yourself or another, then we are obligated by law to notify the authorities of this. 

Will the cost of my treatment be covered by my insurance plan?

Depending on what type of insurance provider you are currently using, coverage for our services will vary.  Many insurance companies reimburse anywhere from 50-80% of the total cost of services.  We take payments at the end of each session, and take cash, checks, and all major credit cards.

How long will my treatment last?

There are no precise determinations that we can make regarding the length of your treatment.  Generally speaking, the longer you have had your mental illness not medically acknowledged, the longer the treatment will take.  Certain conditions do not require a lot of time to treat, and others considerably more.  Certain mental illnesses require just a couple of visits, and others require lifelong maintenance.  We believe that you should seek treatment as soon as possible, for the best outcome.  

How can I prevent my mental illness from coming back?

We give you guidance and protocols to adhere to both inside and outside of our office.  Follow the treatment regimen and plan of action that we prescribe.  Make sure that you follow the medication regimen, attend the psychotherapy and counseling sessions, and keep your life as balanced as you can.  It is very important to try and avoid stressful situations, let your loved ones help you whenever possible, and seek help the moment you feel like your mental illness is coming back or getting worse.

What determines if my mental illness will come back?

There are a few components that play a part in the recurrence of mental illness.
Coexisting stresses in life: often times, a mental illness will recur if there are additional life stressors (family or marital problems, starting a new job, losing someone close to you).  
Age: more often than not, if someone is diagnosed with a mental illness earlier than later in life, there is a higher likelihood of the illness recurring.  
Diagnosis: Some mental illnesses are more common to recur than others.  Some of the ones on the list that are more likely to come back are: OCD, drug and alcohol addiction, eating disorders, and bipolar disorder.

What if I have an emergency or an urgent situation come up?

If you find yourself in the midst of an emergency, please immediately call 9-1-1.  If you have an urgent situation, call our office, and we will see you as soon as we can.

Other emergency numbers include the following:

North Star Hospital 907-258-7575
Providence Hospital 24 Hour Crises Line 907-563-3200   

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