FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
HOW LONG DOES EACH THERAPY SESSION TAKE?
Therapy sessions are generally between 45-60 minutes. These times can depend on insurance coverage, private pay and your financial needs. Every client has different needs and the time needed is often dependent on those needs.
IS TELEHEALTH THERAPY AS EFFECTIVE AS FACE-TO-FACE THERAPY?
Telehealth is conducted via video calls and can also occur via telephone calls. Telehealth has been found to be an effective form of therapy, just with a slightly different approach. There can be limiting factors to consider, such as not having a confidential space to have therapy. The effectiveness of both only differs slightly, based on research. The benefits are still great. As you begin telehealth, if you find that it is not a good fit for you, we encourage you to let us know, as we want you to receive the services that suit you best.
WHAT DOES THE TRAINING AND CERTIFICATION IN PERINATAL MENTAL HEALTH MEAN?
Training in Perinatal Mental Health Certification (PMH-C) means we have completed a 3-day training, which includes advanced training through Postpartum Support International. In order to become certified, we are to have two years' experience in perinatal mental health work and pass a certification exam. We have providers who have completed the 3-day training, advanced training, have experience working in perinatal mental health and passed the certification exam.
WHAT IF YOU ARE NOT THE RIGHT FIT FOR MY MENTAL HEALTH NEEDS?
We highly encourage our clients to let us know when we are not the right fit for their mental health needs. Our therapeutic approach is not for everyone and that is okay. If you are not finding what you need through our services, we will provide you a list of therapists in the area that fit your needs, including specialization in specific areas you may be looking for. Feel free to email us to inquire about referrals, as we believe this is part of our service to you. You are not bothering us and we value serving you in this way. Your wellness is priority.
WHAT SHOULD I EXPECT WHEN I ARRIVE TO MY FIRST APPOINTMENT (FACE-TO-FACE OR VIRTUAL)?
We are located inside a two-story building. Upon entering the main double doors into the hallway, you will enter suite 120. Make yourself comfortable in our waiting room, where you can enjoy water, coffee or tea while waiting. When we begin our appointment, we will review forms and administrative needs you may have. Thereafter, you will have the rest of the time to share your story and begin working on treatment goals. You may or may not know what these goals are and that is okay, we are here to support you through it. **Telehealth appointments are the same, only we meet via video call and we cannot provide water or coffee while you jump on the call; but you are welcome to bring your water, coffee or tea to your appointment.
WHAT ARE THE DIFFERENCES BETWEEN PRIVATE PAY AND INSURANCE-BASED SERVICES?
You may have noticed that some therapists take health insurance and others do not. There are benefits to private pay, in that your mental health treatment/services are not being disclosed to a third party. When we utilize health insurance, our mental health information is no longer confidential; as health insurance companies have access to this information and they can request our notes at any given time. In addition, a diagnosis has to be provided to deem your services medically necessary in order to cover your treatment. Private pay gives you the flexibility of obtaining services that are confidential and without limitations to treatment, frequency, length of sessions, and therapeutic modalities. Private pay and insurance-based therapists are still held to the same ethical guidelines, board rules, and licensure requirements. Pillars of Life Counseling is paneled with Blue Cross Blue Shield, Aetna, United/Optum and Tricare. Private pay services are also available to those who wish to keep their treatment confidential.
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A FULLY LICENSED PROVIDER AND AN ASSOCIATE?
Pillars of Life Counseling has fully licensed providers, as well as associate providers. Associate providers are therapists that are undergoing the process of becoming fully licensed. Associate or intern providers have to obtain anywhere between 2,000 to 3,000 hours (depending on their license) to then apply for full licensure. The associate provider is under supervision throughout their process to full licensure. This means that associate providers have already completed their masters degree in counseling/social work, internships and practicums required by their licensure and are now serving their community for the specified time under their supervisor. Upon completion of their hours, they will request full licensure to the Texas Behavioral Health Executive Council. All fully licensed professionals become licensed in the same way. Fully licensed and associate license providers may differ in the amount of years of experience in the field, but all have the same passion for serving the community through mental health services.