How long are sessions?
Sessions are usually 50 minutes in length.

How often and for how long does one come for psychotherapy/counseling?
That depends on the issues you’re working on and their level of severity. Typically, clients come for sessions once a week, but some clients come biweekly once they feel stabilized regarding their issues. I offer both short-term and long-term therapy.

What is your approach to working with clients?
My style is active, compassionate and collaborative. I use an integrated approach working with my clients. Because I believe that not one type of therapy works for everyone, I use a variety of approaches and techniques (e.g. cognitive-behavioral therapy, strength-based, client-centered, solution-focused, mindfulness) depending on your needs and personality.

Are sessions confidential?
Yes. Your identity, the fact that you are being seen in psychotherapy and the content of our communications are kept completely confidential. However, there are several situations where I am legally obligated to break confidentiality in order to protect you or other people from harm (e.g. if a child, elderly person or dependent adult is being abused, or if you are a danger to yourself (e.g. suicidal) or others). Also, confidentiality may be broken when there is a court order for records subpoenaed for legal reasons or if you give written permission to disclose information to an insurance company, to another professional, or third party.

What are your fees? Do you accept insurance?
For those needing a reduced fee, I offer a sliding scale (range of fees) based on your ability to pay. Please call (510) 594-4003 to discuss fees and sliding scale availability. I also accept some insurance such as PPO plans (clients are reimbursed).

Why do some clients choose to pay “out of pocket” and not use their health insurance to pay for sessions?
If you decide to use your health insurance to pay for psychotherapy, your insurance company may have access to information about your mental health. Therapists are required to provide information so that individuals can receive benefits/reimbursement. This typically involves providing a diagnosis from the DSM and giving limited treatment information.

Also, some health insurance companies may limit the number of sessions you have per year (e.g. 20). Some clients who wish to see a therapist longer and as frequently as they would like may choose to pay for sessions on their own.

Do you prescribe psychotropic medication?
No. (However, in some states like New Mexico, Louisiana and Illinois, psychologists are able to prescribe certain medications. Some states are working towards psychologists having “prescription privileges.”) However, I do assess whether medication will be helpful for our work together. If medication is appropriate, I can help you find an appropriate psychiatrist or physician. If you are currently taking medication, I can also consult with your doctor on your treatment (with your permission).