Accessing Therapy Services
Currently we are offering in-person and virtual therapy sessions based on what form of therapy best meets our clients’ needs and manages risks associated with Covid-19. Virtual sessions are being offered by a version of Zoom that fully complies with all Canadian privacy legislation. We are accepting new clients and will explore with parents and adult clients at the intake stage which form of therapy may be offered. Clients will be asked to sign a consent form that outlines our in-person and virtual therapy policies.
To make a referral, please email our Administration Manager, Sue Legree ([email protected]) the full name and date of birth of the client being referred and any questions you may have about our services. Sue will send you an electronic referral form which you will then be asked to securely, electronically submit to our server. If you are unable to complete a registration form on a computer or device, please contact Sue, and she can mail you a hard copy referral. Clients are put on our service wait list once a referral has been completed.
After receiving your intake form, our Clinical Practice Manager, Michelle McIntyre, will contact you to confirm that our services are a good fit for you or your child’s counseling needs, to let you know when our services may be available, and to book an initial intake session.
Child and youth clients usually do not attend the intake appointment given that sensitive issues are often discussed. Parents or guardians are asked to advise us if they feel it is in the child or youth client’s best interests to attend the intake appointment.
It is best to email questions about our services or our referral process to [email protected], but phone messages can be left at 519-936-0108. We respond to phone calls weekly and emails by the next business day.
We regret that we are unable to offer parking at our location – 335 Wellington Rd. Our staff use our limited parking spaces. Clients with medical or mobility concerns are asked to speak to their assigned clinician about exceptions that may be made on their behalf. There is free 2hr street parking on Percy street – the side street just north of the practice on the west side of Wellington Rd.
Preparing Children for Therapy
Children and youth are sometimes worried about coming to therapy for the first time. Parents are asked to reassure their child that the initial session will be about getting to know one another and that they will not need to discuss the reason for referral until they feel comfortable with their therapist.
It is important for parents or guardians to discuss with their child why they are being brought to therapy and how they may benefit. This talk can help prevent the child being surprised when these issues are discussed in session. Parents are encouraged to contact their child’s therapist for additional support to prepare their child for therapy.
Please let us know if any member of your family is frightened of dogs as Dr. Bell’s Standard Poodle supports her work with children. In these situations, Lola will be enclosed in another room.
We are located at 335 Wellington Rd. (West side of Wellington, just north of Baseline Rd)
Unfortunately, we are unable to offer parking. Clients are asked to use free parking on neighbouring side streets to the north-west of Wellington Rd. Clients are discouraged from parking in the Staples parking lot as their cars will be towed.
What is EMDR therapy?
Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) therapy is an integrative psychotherapy approach that has been extensively researched and proven effective for the treatment of trauma. EMDR is a set of standardized protocols that incorporates elements from many different treatment approaches. As EMDR is a mental health intervention, it should only be offered by properly trained and licensed mental health clinicians.
All of our associates are approved EMDR therapists with EMDRIA, the governing body for EMDR training and practice.
Does my child come to the first session?
We encourage parents to attend the initial appointment without their child present to allow a candid discussion about their concerns for their child and about other sensitive topics.
Sometimes teens want to attend the initial appointment as they have a strong need to know what is shared with the therapist. In these situations we meet with the teen and the parent together and then contract with the teen how we can receive additional information from the parent, when needed.
How many sessions will my child attend?
The length of time in therapy varies with each child. Usually children require a minimum of eight sessions for an initial assessment and for the child to learn a few strategies to manage feelings.
We encourage parents to discuss with their therapist during the initial intake appointment the number of sessions that they recommend the child attend. Parents ultimately decide how long their child will attend therapy, as they understand their child best and their financial constraints.
Parents are asked to advise their child’s therapist as soon as possible about their intention to discontinue therapy so that an ending session to celebrate the child’s progress can be scheduled.
Are therapy sessions covered by OHIP?
Our services are not covered by OHIP. Some parents have extended health benefits through their employer that may cover our services. It is important for parents to check if their benefits program cover the services of MSW, RSWs. Please note that Dr. Bell’s doctorate is in social work, not psychology, and thus her work is not covered by plans limiting coverage to PhDs in clinical psychology. Her services fall under coverage for MSWs, RSWs.
Do you have a sliding scale for services?
We are not able to offer a sliding scale for therapy services given that Dr. Bell volunteers her time to develop community capacity in the area of child sexual abuse.
Parents are encouraged to discuss any concerns related to the cost of therapy during the initial telephone call. We can contract a limited number of sessions to address the child’s most pressing concern or we can direct parents to community, government funded, programs.
How much does each session cost?
Parents are encouraged to discuss any concerns related to the cost of therapy during the initial email communication or intake telephone call. We can contract a limited number of sessions to address the child’s most pressing concern or we can direct parents to community, government funded, programs.
Will I receive information about what is discussed in sessions?
Young children often request that their parent attend some or all of their sessions. We support parents to be active allies in their child’s treatment and contract with the child how their parents will receive progress reports.
While we recognize that teens often have strong privacy needs, we also believe that it is important to negotiate what information can be shared so that parents can support their progress. Please note – we advise parents immediately if we have any concerns about their child’s safety.
Does my ex-partner need to consent to my child’s participation in therapy?
If the child’s other parent has custodial decision-making rights, we believe we are obligated to ensure that both parents consent to therapy.
While children usually benefit from both their parents being involved in their therapy, there are some situations that preclude parental involvement. Parents are asked to discuss concerns related to parental consent during the initial phone call with Dr. Bell.