Contrary to stigma and stereotypes regarding mental health, psychotherapy is effective for most people in distress. It involves hard work, equal partnership with a therapist, and courage to approach anxiety-provoking or painful issues that are usually avoided. Establishing and maintaining a secure therapist-client working relationship geared to the client’s concerns is extremely important to support the hard work of therapy. Anxiety, strong emotions, and memories of related experiences are quite common along with encouragement for self-understanding. Therapists cannot read minds, so honest feedback is necessary to a reach a clear understanding of the client’s emotional-psychological problems and to help the client effectively address their problems in a reasonable amount of time.
Medications and Psychotherapy
Medications can help some people with symptoms in the short term, especially when combined with an empowering relationship with their physician. It is also important to recognize that pills do not cure mental health problems—nor can they reconcile and work through people’s complex emotions, thoughts, and behaviour patterns. In some cases, use of sedating medications can interfere with the client’s ability to engage and respond in psychotherapy and warrants consultation with the physician. Clients are always encouraged to advise their physician and therapist regarding any medication changes or to consult closely with their physician if they wish to discontinue medications after therapy.
I am professionally and ethically obligated to keep client information confidential and I require written client consent to release any information to others except for the following circumstances:
Court order or subpeona to disclose confidential information.
Information about current abuse or neglect of a child or dependent adult.
Information about imminent threat of serious harm to the client or others.
In the vast majority of cases the information collected during psychotherapy remains completely confidential. Although the circumstances above are quite rare in my practice, it is important for clients to be fully informed about the limits of confidentiality before engaging in psychological services. Your privacy is very important so it is my policy that files only include information relevant to providing therapy or assessment services and are kept in a secure location. Please note that I cannot assure the confidentiality of personal information contained in email correspondences.
FEES and BILLING
Current private rate is $250 per 50 minutes of service. Services include all activities during scheduled appointment times and any services requested outside of appointments, including file review, assessment, report preparation, and consultation. Service fees for RCMP, Calgary Police Service, Calgary 911, and Canadian Armed Forces members are fully covered.
I have a waiting list for a limited number of spaces at a reduced rate or pro bono. Contact me if you would like to be placed on the waiting list. Alternatively, please consider contacting the Calgary Counselling Centre for accessible therapy services with a sliding fee scale based on your income.
Scheduled appointment times are reserved exclusively for you so you are strongly encouraged to pick times that you can commit to in order to achieve your goals. It is your responsibility to provide at least 24 hours notice via email for cancellation of a scheduled appointment. If you fail to provide 24 hours notice or miss a scheduled appointment, then it is your responsibility to pay for the full cost of the missed appointment before any other appointments can be scheduled. Please note that receipts must indicate payment for a missed appointment in accordance with the law.
Major credit cards, electronic transfers, cheques, and cash are accepted at the time of service. Payments through PayPal are also accepted when securing appointment times. Detailed receipts will be emailed to you on a regular basis for tax and insurance purposes. Please fill out cheques beforehand payable to Elliott McCallum Consulting Ltd.
Health Insurance Coverage
Unfortunately, psychological services are still not covered by Alberta Health Care Insurance outside of a small number of hospital and community programs. These services are tax deductible and usually covered in part or in full by extended health insurance, personal health accounts, or employee and family assistance plans (i.e., EAP/EFAP). Please consult with your Human Resources department or insurer beforehand about your or your spouse’s therapy and counselling coverage by considering the following questions:
What is my maximum annual coverage for psychological services?
What is the coverage amount per therapy session?
When does my annual coverage renew?
Will my employer allocate EAP/EFAP funds for services with Dr. Elliott?