Typically there are three levels of psychotherapists that you will come across which are students, guides, and experts. Typically, despite most therapists surely having favorite predispositions on how to operate, great therapists know that they have to be adaptable to the needs of the client. We also ask for that same level of adaptability and open-mindedness from our clients and parents. Various online search engines can be great tools to further assist you understanding what is going on in your world, however, these sources pale in comparison between your clinician's experience, judgement, and unbiased assessment of what is going on in your life. There are a multitude of social, psychological, environmental, and various other factors that affect our mental health, and we ask that you develop treatment planning with us.
Appointment times, frequency, and format depend GREATLY on your insurance benefits. Make sure you check out our appointments tab for more information on location, see our next seven day availability, and other important commentary. Please keep in mind that due to current pandemic, teletherapy benefits currently have temporary authorizations across most insurances and may discontinue in the future. Appointment times are generally either 45 minutes or 53 minutes depending on your insurance eligibility. Your initial intake appointment will be in-person for identification, assessment, payment, and documentation purposes. Due to a multitude of previous problems we have experienced in the past, we require a credit card to be place on file for private insurances for copay, coinsurance, deductibles, and operating fees. View our "counseling appointments" tab for much more information including how to make your first appointment!
Please note that your clinician purposely repeats all client appointments. This means that most missed appointments cannot be filled and consequently may likely incur a no-show fee with less than 48 hour notice. Standard attendance policies apply where a weekly client is allowed three EXCUSED absences every ninety days and biweekly clients are only allowed to miss ONE appointment in a ninety day period of time. Such is the price of consistency and this practice choosing not to double book clients or schedule clients week-to-week. Please keep in mind that if you "no-show" for two appointments in a row or violate our attendance policy, we reserve the right to cancel all recurring future appointments which may lead to termination.
FORENSIC vs. MEDICAL SERVICES
Outpatient clinical services are the lowest level of mental healthcare. Consequently, case management is not included in MOST insurance plans! If you feel like your child needs more care, intensive outpatient, in-home, clinical day schools, or residential facilities might be your better option. Most people don't realize that most provisions for Court, Department of Children and Families, Family Court, Court Drug Testing, Social Security, Social Security Disability, Guardian Ad Litem, School, and various other exchanges typically are not considered medical necessity by most insurance providers for standard outpatient treatment. If they were, they would provide reimbursement for what is called a T1016 code (case management). The unfortunate reality is that in many cases either the family is responsible for these charges and/or your clinician attempts to be as efficient with their time as they can be in order not to charge you.
TELETHERAPY vs. IN-PERSON
Your therapist wishes for you to experience the greatest benefit from your time with this office. In a weird twist of reality, behaviors are much like addictions where we develop these recursive habitual cycles that are often hard to break. For a person with depression or anxiety, this often means difficulty leaving the house. For a person that has ADHD, this means difficulties with focused attention. This is perhaps the most influential reason why we don't allow teletherapy for children. When it comes to a person struggling with various health ailments/lack of activity, in-person therapy may afford an opportunity for general exercise (walking with your therapist). The general secret surrounding your striving towards your mental health goals is that change begets change. If you are making your own referral to this office -on your own accord- (not being coerced), this means you are already halfway there! Teletherapy also has various risks concerning your HIPAA rights ranging from the propensity of computers to be "hacked" to family members listening in on your session. Due to these and many more constraints, in-person psychotherapy is generally the preferred method for most interventions.
Currently, there are very few provisions for very select insurance plans that even cover ANY and ALL phone calls with your therapist which means you would likely be responsible for the costs associated with these services. Your clinician will be there to support you during URGENT matters and in times of need. Not for routine matters, or issues that can wait until the next business day when you can schedule an appointment with your clinician. Just like your previous or current job, your clinician needs to recharge on their days off -especially considering the stressful work we do- and likes to get reimbursed for their efforts towards your success. This is typically a very hard notion to convey considering the nature of the work we do and this being an relationship-driven business. As a general rule of thumb, if we have to ask ourselves "is this an urgent matter?" that it typically means it likely can wait. 211 or your local emergency department are a great resource for emergency/urgent matters where a professional will either actually show up to your home (mobile crisis unit) or a crisis clinician will perform an initial evaluation. We ask that cancellations be emailed to . Texts are permitted during regular business hours to both of our urgent/nonurgent business lines. Urgent communications will be responded to within 24 hours which means if you need someone right that very moment to choose either 211 or 911 options.
YES! We do see older children and adolescents. Problem is 3-7pm availability rarely has any openings and there seldom is a remedy for that! So please, do not make intake appointments for children that are not sustainable (school, sports, etc.) and understand that the intake time you are choosing is the continuing appointment time you will likely be offered. Lastly, everything is included in your child's one hour session. This includes updates from parents or brief case management opportunities that will be conducting during your child's appointment. These processes does not "interrupt" your child's session and is very much a part of it. If you want additional time, please schedule a separate appointment of which you might be responsible for additional fees for additional services. Lastly, we also like to go for therapeutic walks with clients to a local public convenience store and ask that you help us reinforce the "under $3" rule which is nonnegotiable with your child!
There are a multitude of factors that either lead to successful or unsuccessful treatment plan terminations. Typically, if you are on-time with your payments, followed the rules of this office, and showed up to your scheduled appointments most of these clients remain in "good standing" with this office and can return to this practice outside of ninety-day period of time. During your absence we are no longer your therapist. This means if there is a urgent mental health care item you would like resolved you can either schedule another intake appointment with us, find another therapist, speak to your primary care physician, dial 211 (mobile crisis unit), or go to the emergency room/dial 911. If we believe you need a higher level of care (e.g., intensive outpatient, etc.) we will let you know during your discharge or in writing. We also apologize in advance since future referrals and/or brief phone calls after discharge constitutes a level of post-psychotherapy influence that is discouraged by most governing bodies we follow.
VACATIONS AND HOLIDAYS
Whoot! We love vacations as much as you do! With that said, vacations/holiday/absences will be posted on our "home" or "landing" website page three months to a year in advance. We also typically observe most major holidays. During our absence, we would like you to utilize either 211 for all urgent needs and ask that you respect our well-earned days to ourselves. This includes cancellations, case-management, and most other routine matters. If it really can't wait feel free to text us, however, it might be some time before we can respond.
Payments are required during time of service. For private insurances, a credit card will be required to be kept in your file for all incurred fees.
For outstanding balances please send cash, check, or credit card information to:
Change Talk LLC
251 Essex Plaza
Essex CT, 06426
Checks: Should be made out to Change Talk LLC
Credit Cards: Information should include Card Holder Name, Account Number, Expiration Date, three digit security code, and billing zip code.
AUTO PAY: The most common option. We accept all major credit cards that will be placed securely in your electronic file.