WHAT IS PSYCHOTHERAPY?
Psychotherapy is the process by which you and your therapist talk together to achieve a
better understanding of you are, how you feel and identify specific ways in which you can begin to think and feel differently. Therapy is a way to learn new approaches to your life
that leave you feeling less stuck and powerless.
Unlike other therapies, psychotherapy is not about being told what to do. Psychotherapy is designed to bring about the personal change you desire in your life, with your active participation in the process.
ARE THERE LIMITATIONS TO WHAT I CAN TALK ABOUT?
No. However, if you are planning on engaging in harm to self or others, ethical and legal
practice may require that confidentiality is breached in the service of attempting to preserve and protect human life. In the instance of court generated
subpoenas, an appropriate and timely response is also required from this practice. You will
be informed of these events, should they occur.
HOW OFTEN WILL I SEE MY THERAPIST?
Frequency will be determined by presenting concerns. In the beginning, however, visits are typically once a week.
HOW LONG ARE MY SESSIONS?
While the standard length of an outpatient psychotherapy session is 45-50 minutes, you have other options. Please request the fee schedule.
WHAT RIGHTS DO I HAVE?
You have the right to work with a licensed clinician who is available to you promptly at the
time of your scheduled appointment. If you have any concerns or questions regarding the course of treatment, please bring them to your
therapist at once. It is important that you and your therapist are clear and on-course during this very important work.
DO I HAVE RESPONSIBILITIES?
You are responsible for keeping your appointment on time and doing the work in session
and between sessions to which you have committed. You are also responsible for paying for each session at the beginning of the session. Your sessions will begin and end within
the scheduled time. If you are 15 minutes late, your session will be reduced by that
time. If you arrive a few minutes early, you will be assured of having a complete session.
Please give yourself time to locate parking.
If you have homework, it is because you have indicated an interest in working between
sessions. Homework is usually optional. Homework may take several forms and may include handouts for thoughtful completion, journaling, reading etc.
ARE THERE OTHER FEES?
If the practice is required to bill, there will be a five dollar ($ 5.00 per month surcharge.)
This surcharge covers the cost of document production, mailing etc. A late fee of 2% of the total balance due per month will be added after 60 days and for every month therafter
until the balance is paid in full. Delinquent accounts may be turned over to a
collection agency. All collections and legal costs will also be added to your balance.
Returned checks incur a $40 charge. The way to avoid all these charges is to pay for each session at the beginning of the session. You will receive a
monthly receipt suitable for submission to your insurance company and/or your tax records.
Payment options are:
Cash, Discover Card, Visa, MasterCard, American Express, Check, and your Flexible
Account (if you are using your Flexible Spending Account, please ensure that you have gone
through the necessary steps to allow Office of Pamela B. Brewer, MSW, Ph.D., LCSW-C to withdraw funds.
If you must cancel your appointment, please call 48 hours in advance. You are required to
pay the full fee for sessions you that you have not canceled in a timely manner. Whenever feasible, your therapist will offer you a rescheduled appointment within three days of the missed visit.
Your therapist may recommend a medication evaluation. If you choose to act on the recommendation you will need to schedule an appointment to be evaluated by a
psychiatrist of your choice. The psychiatrist will make the final
decision regarding the recommendation of medication. If your therapist believes that therapy will be much less useful to you without medication, that will be communicated to you. Under extreme circumstances, your therapist reserves the right to terminate treatment if you are unable/unwilling to comply with a medication evaluation and subsequent medication regimen.
IS THERE ANYTHING ELSE I SHOULD KNOW?
1. All business will be conducted within the “clinical hour”. This includes scheduling the next appointment.
2. Because of the unique nature of the therapeutic relationship, your therapist has many
guidelines to follow- including the strict prohibition against dual relationships of any kind
including treating family members not in treatment with you, participating in any off-site performances/family gatherings etc.
3. Your therapist may not accept gifts of any kind for any reason. If you would like to send
an expression in writing, you are welcome. Anticipate that your expressions may be explored during the clinical hour, as they are a reflection of you.
4. With the exception of scheduled telephone therapy sessions, extended telephone
consultations are billed at the emergency session rate in 1/4 hour segments.
5. A missed appointment that you have either canceled or rescheduled may result in
immediate cancellation of all future visits until you and your therapist have an opportunity to confirm your ongoing participation.
6. Every attempt is made to respond to email communication within 36-48 hours. If you
have an urgent matter or wish to reschedule or cancel an appointment, please call 301.654.5286.
7. The patterns that exist in your life outside the clinical hour show up in the clinical hour.
This is an important part of the therapeutic investigation and understanding. On the days
when your appointment is the very last thing you want to do, please know how important it is to keep your appointment. You are not expected to always be in your best mood
We are team and we will work most well together when we are looking at the
range of ways in which you experience your existence.
WHAT SHOULD I DO IN CASE OF EMERGENCY?
If you think you may be in immediate harm to self or others,
you must seek immediate attention by calling 911 or going to the nearest emergency room.
Emergencies must be treated immediately. You must not wait to receive a return call from your therapist if you have any reason to fear for your safety or the safety of others.
If you believe the matter at hand is of extreme urgency you may contact your therapist at
the emergency number provided on the office voice mail. If you routinely experience the need to contact your therapist outside the
clinical hour, this may indicate that additional weekly sessions are required. If this is the case this will be discussed with you during your therapy session.
Although insurance does not currently cover telephone services, many clients appreciate
this as an option - particularly if unable to, on occasion, leave work/home in a timely manner or when weather conditions are such that it would be safer to conduct a session via
DO YOU CHARGE FOR WRITTEN REPORTS?
Yes. Please review the fee schedule. Fees for report writing are due prior to the production of the report.
In the unfortunate event you wish your therapist to participate in a legal matter, you are
very strongly urged to look at the pros and cons of this decision with your attorney and your
therapist. Legal issues usually result in significant emotional and financial expense and may not provide your intended consequence. Please try to avoid this route if at all possible.
NO PARTICIPATION IN MANAGED CARE PANELS.
Because of an ongoing commitment to your confidentiality, this office does not participate in managed care programs.
If you choose to access your insurance, you will be establishing your relationship with your
insurance company and not one in which the office of Pamela B. Brewer, MSW, Ph.D., LCSW-C will participate. Thus, this office will not participate in any activities related to
accessing authorization/providing documentation, reports, summaries/paperwork of any kind.
General Practice Information
Pamela B. Brewer, MSW, PhD., LCSW-C