Each Psychologist at Affinity Psychology Group sets their own rates. Generally speaking however, psychologists in Alberta adhere to the hourly rates set forth by the Psychologists' Association of Alberta. Fees and rates may vary according to level of experience and types of services rendered.
Do you take insurance, and how does that work?
To determine if you have psychological service coverage through your insurance carrier, the first thing you should do is call them. Check your coverage carefully and make sure you understand the parameters of your benefits. Affinity Psychology Group does not direct bill insurance providers. Some helpful questions you can ask them:
What are my psychological service benefits?
What is the coverage amount per counselling session?
How many sessions does my plan cover?
How much does my insurance pay for an out-of-network provider?
When is my anniversary date for annual coverage?
How do I make an appointment?
When you make a request to see someone though the Contact Us page of this website, your request will be triaged by a Registered Psychologist who will assist you in identifying your needs and match you with the appropriate professional.
How soon can I get an appointment?
Each Psychologist at Affinity Psychology Group manages their own work schedules. Once you are matched with a psychologist in the office you will be directly contacted to arrange your first session.
*Sessions are by appointment only. If you are experiencing an emergency, please go directly to your nearest emergency centre.
Psychological assessment is a process of testing and evaluation that uses a combination of techniques to help arrive at some hypotheses about an individual’s capacity, learning, and/or behaviour. A psychological assessment incorporates the administration of standardized tools along with interviews, observations, review of pertinent documents, and consultation. An assessment may be undertaken upon self-referral and is helpful in identifying an individual’s strengths, areas of need, and recommendations for academics and/or behavioural intervention. By identifying these factors, an assessment may be used to assist in planning within a classroom, to identify needs for special services and support in school, and to help gain access to resources in the community.
How can counselling help me?
A number of benefits are available from participating in counselling. Therapists can provide support, problem-solving skills, and enhanced coping strategies for issues such as depression, anxiety, relationship troubles, unresolved childhood issues, grief, stress management, body image issues and creative blocks. Many people also find that psychologists can be a tremendous asset to managing personal growth, interpersonal relationships, family concerns, marriage issues, and the hassles of daily life. Psychologists can provide a fresh perspective on a difficult problem or point you in the direction of a solution. The benefits you obtain from counselling depend on how well you use the process and put into practice what you learn. Some of the benefits available from counselling include:
Attaining a better understanding of yourself, your goals and values
Developing skills for improving your relationships
Finding resolution to the issues or concerns that led you to seek therapy
Learning new ways to cope with stress and anxiety
Managing anger, grief, depression, and other emotional pressures
Improving communications and listening skills
Changing old behavior patterns and developing new ones
Discovering new ways to solve problems in your family or marriage
Improving your self-esteem and boosting self-confidence
Do I really need counselling? I can usually handle my problems.
Everyone goes through challenging situations in life, and while you may have successfully navigated through other difficulties you've faced, there's nothing wrong with seeking out extra support when you need it. In fact, counselling is for people who have enough self-awareness to realize they need a helping hand, and that is something to be admired. You are taking responsibility by accepting where you're at in life and making a commitment to change the situation by seeking counselling. Counselling provides long-lasting benefits and support, giving you the tools you need to avoid triggers, re-direct damaging patterns, and overcome whatever challenges you face.
Why do people go to counselling and how do I know if it is right for me?
People have many different motivations for coming to psychotherapy. Some may be going through a major life transition (unemployment, divorce, new job, etc.), or are not handling stressful circumstances well. Some people need assistance managing a range of other issues such as low self-esteem, depression, anxiety, relationship problems, and parenting support. Counselling can help provide some much needed encouragement and help with skills to get you through these periods. In short, people seeking counselling are ready to meet the challenges in their lives and ready to make changes in their lives.
What is counselling like?
Because each person has different issues and goals for counselling, the experience will be different depending on the individual. In general, you can expect to discuss the current events happening in your life, your personal history relevant to your issue, and report progress (or any new insights gained) from the previous counselling session. Depending on your specific needs, counselling can be short-term, for a specific issue, or longer-term, to deal with more difficult patterns or your desire for more personal development. Either way, it is most common to schedule regular sessions with your psychologist.
It is important to understand that you will get more results from counselling if you actively participate in the process. The ultimate purpose of counselling is to help you bring what you learn in session back into your life. Therefore, beyond the work you do in sessions, your psychologist may suggest some things you can do outside of the sessions to support your process, such as reading a pertinent book, journaling on specific topics, noting particular behaviours or taking action on your goals.
What about medication vs. counselling?
It is well established that the long-term solution to mental and emotional problems and the pain they cause cannot be solved solely by medication. Instead of just treating the symptom, counselling addresses the cause of our distress and the behaviour patterns that curb your progress. You can best achieve sustainable growth and a greater sense of well-being with an integrative approach to wellness. In working with your medical doctor you can determine what's best for you, and in some cases a combination of medication and counselling may be the right course of action.
Does what we talk about in counselling remain confidential?
Confidentiality is one of the most important components between a client and psychologist. Successful counselling requires a high degree of trust with highly sensitive subject matter that is usually not discussed anywhere but the psychologist's office. Every psychologist maintains a written copy of the confidential disclosure agreement, and you can expect that what you discuss in session will not be shared with anyone. This is called “Informed Consent”. Sometimes, however, you may want your psychologist to share information or give an update to someone on your healthcare team. By law, your psychologist cannot release or gather any information without obtaining your written permission.
*Professional standards of practice guidelines are adhered to maintain confidentiality except for the following situations:
By law psychologists are obligated to report suspected abuse or neglect of children to Child Services or law enforcement. If someone is a danger to themselves or others the psychologist is released from confidentiality in order to take necessary protective measures. If records are subpoenaed by court, the psychologist is obligated to release the requested information.