What is a registered psychotherapist?

In order to practice safely and ethically, I am registered with a regulatory body that serves to protect the interests of the general public through rigorous practice standards and requirements for registration. Specifically, I am registered with the College of Registered Psychotherapists of Ontario (CRPO). You can learn more by clicking here to visit CRPO's website.

One of the primary ways that CRPO protects the interests of the general public is through the creation of protected titles that signify completion of specific requirements for therapy practice. These requirements include appropriate education (e.g., completion of a masters degree), a specified amount of direct clinical contact hours (e.g., one-on-one therapy), a specified amount hours of direct supervision received from a qualified mental health professional, and completion of a registration exam that assesses entry-level therapist competencies.

How much do you charge and how do i pay for sessions?

My current rate for counselling and psychotherapy services is $160 + HST per 50-minute session. This fee is due at the end of each session. This fee is subject to change, though you will be notified before any such changes are made. You can pay for sessions by sending an eTransfer to kevin@therapyemail.com, or by credit card payment through a secure and encrypted client portal that I will set up for you. Any paperwork or reports that you may require me to fill out will be billed at the same hourly rate. If you have any questions or concerns about payment, please contact me.

What should I expect in therapy sessions?

Although therapy is unique for everyone based on such things as life experiences, presenting concerns, and personal goals, each therapy session is broadly focused on developing insight, taking in different perspectives, and collaboratively working toward your goals for therapy. In between our sessions, I may also provide you with some resources (e.g., readings, questionnaires, exercises). We will spend some time in follow-up sessions reflecting upon your experiences with these resources in order to further facilitate therapeutic discussions. My main goals are often to help you address and resolve traumatic or disturbing memories and to develop adaptive coping strategies and problem-solving skills.

What is EMDR therapy?

Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) is an evidence-based and comprehensive method of therapy that was initially developed to alleviate distress associated with traumatic experiences. Clients are directed by the therapist to access emotionally disturbing material while simultaneously focusing on an external stimulus, which in the original form of EMDR included therapist-directed lateral eye movements. This bilateral stimulation (e.g., eye movements, tapping, audio stimulation) is meant to help you focus on intricate details of disturbing memories while remaining grounded in the present moment.

In a nutshell, EMDR is a highly-structured and effective therapy protocol that facilitates linking disturbed memory networks with healthy and adaptive information, thus effectively reducing the distress associated with these disturbing memories and helping people to recover from traumatic or otherwise distressing experiences (e.g., PTSD, anxiety, depression, panic, and more).

For more information, please check out this blog post that I wrote about EMDR, or you can check out this brief video

how effective is virtual emdr therapy?

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic and increased needs for mental health support, EMDR therapists focused their efforts on disseminating and providing EMDR therapy through an online format. Though research on this online delivery method is in early stages, initial results point to positive clinical outcomes and substantial mental health improvements. With slight modifications, the essential elements of EMDR therapy remain viable in an online format, and the inherent risks mirror those of any other online therapy format (e.g., connection disruptions, difficulty finding a private space in a busy home). 

If you would like more information, please check out this resource from the EMDR International Association on the overall efficacy of virtual EMDR therapy.

What is CBT?

Cognitive-behavioural therapy (CBT) is an approach to psychological treatment that focuses on the connections between our thoughts, feelings and behaviours as they contribute to various mood states. It states that the stressful situations we face are not themselves the problem, but rather our distress arises from our appraisals of these situations. Treatment typically involves identifying maladaptive thinking patterns and behaviours, implementing evidence-based thinking and behaviour change strategies, and utilizing coping strategies for emotional regulation. 

If you are interested, you can check out a comprehensive information guide on CBT here.

What is the difference between counselling and psychotherapy?

Though the two terms are often used interchangeably, there are notable differences between them. Counselling is more of a short-term focus that emphasizes problem-solving or learning specific coping strategies for dealing with problem areas. Counselling focuses more on specific problem areas, such as stress management or addictions.

Psychotherapy, on the other hand, is more of a long-term approach that focuses on an individual's patterns of thinking and behaving. The focus in psychotherapy is much broader than in counselling, and the goals are often to help people feel better equipped to manage stress, understand thinking and behaviour patterns that interfere with achieving their personal goals, enjoy more satisfying relationships with friends and loved ones, and improve emotional regulation skills in the face of stressful situations.

What do you mean by "evidence-based"?

This means that the techniques and strategies used in our sessions are based on research that has demonstrated their effectiveness for targeting specific problems. Evidence-based psychotherapy treatments are validated using randomized controlled trials (RCTs), which means that research participants are randomly assigned to different experimental conditions to compare treatment conditions against "control" groups that may involve the participants being offered alternative treatment approaches, or no treatment at all. When the treatment provided is shown to be effective across numerous RCTs, it is considered evidence-based, and thus a best practice.

how long do sessions last?

Each session is 50-minutes long, though we may sometimes talk longer than this depending on a number of factors. If we extend past this 50-minutes, please note that you will not be charged any additional fees. Unless previously specified and agreed upon, we will not extend sessions beyond 90-minutes.

What is your cancellation policy?

I ask that you give me at least 24-hours notice if you need to cancel or change your appointment. Any late cancellations or no-shows will be subject to a fee of $80 + HST. That being said, I understand that things can come up like sudden illnesses or emergencies. As a result, I may waive late cancellation fees depending on the circumstances.

can i use my extended benefits?

Yes, depending on your extended benefits coverage. Please check with your extended benefits provider to ensure that you have coverage for a Registered Psychotherapist. If you have any questions or concerns about using insurance, please contact me.

Do you do direct billing?

Unfortunately, I do not. When you pay for sessions, a receipt will be generated and provided to you by email. You will then be able to submit this receipt to your extended benefits provider for reimbursement. If you run into any issues with reimbursement from your extended benefits provider, please contact me.

Why do you charge hst?

In order to remain compliant with Canada Revenue Agency business regulations, I must charge HST for all psychotherapy services that are provided to clients. As stated on the Canada Revenue Agency website, “Currently, there is no provision in the [Excise Tax] Act that specifically exempts from the GST/HST supplies of psychotherapy services or services rendered by a psychotherapist, even if the psychotherapist is licensed and renders the service in a province that regulates the profession of psychotherapy.” Please see this link for more information.

Do i need a referral?

Nope. Feel free to reach out to me any time, and I will get back to you as soon as I can.