How Do I Know if I "Need" Therapy*?
Signs that you could benefit from therapy include:
Feeling an overwhelming, prolonged sense of helplessness and sadness
Problems don't seem to get better despite your efforts and help from family and friends
Difficulty concentrating on work assignments or carrying out other everyday activities
Excessive worry, expecting the worst or feeling constantly 'on edge'
Behaviors, such as drinking too much alcohol, using drugs or being aggressive, are harming you or others, or negatively impacting your relationships or your daily activities
*adapted from the American Psychological Association
How Does Therapy Work?
In general, therapy works by providing a confidential and and safe place for you to discuss stressors and concerns with an unbiased, non-judgmental professional who can help you discover solutions to the issues that brought you to therapy. Discussing problems with a psychologist has been proven to help people become more confident, productive individuals, and to feel both physically and emotionally healthier. Psychologists work together with clients or patients to collaborate on issues of concern and help develop adaptive coping strategies for managing these problems.
Different theoretical approaches allow for various types of therapeutic work to take place. For example, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) may focus on a specific concern in the present (for example, a phobia or a severe depressive event) and help strategize ways to help reduce the impact on one's life by developing tools to help cope in the here and now. A more psychodynamic or psychoanalytic approach will focus on the presenting concern, but will also allow for a deeper exploration of one's past and how past relationships and developmental events may have impacted the current situation affecting a client or patient. Dr. Vasquez has specialized training in both CBT and psychodynamic orientations and is comfortable using a blended approach specifically adapted to the needs of her clients.
Things to Consider...
In order for you to receive reimbursement for psychotherapy, insurance companies will require a diagnosis code - meaning even if you are seeing me to to cope with a physical illness, stressful life event, or interpersonal situation, I will be forced to "diagnose" you in order to obtain payment.
Some people would rather not have a diagnosis assigned to them when in fact, there is no actual diagnosis. If this is the case, you may wish to pay privately when we meet and not submit any forms to an insurance company. Private pay option is a means of ensuring your confidentiality 100%, as your private information never leaves my possession and is never communicated to anyone. You may still be eligible to pay for therapy with tax-free Health Savings Account (HSA) dollars (individual plans vary with respect to this; check your plan accordingly).
Dr. Vasquez is not a contracted provider with any insurance carriers, meaning she is an "out-of-network" provider. Payment is collected from the client directly at the time of service and claims can then be submitted by the client to their insurance company. Treatment is often covered in part, through clients' out-of-network benefits.
Dr. Vasquez may work with clients who have financial concerns on a case-by-case basis to set a mutually acceptable fee, as she believes finances should not impact one's ability to obtain effective treatment.
Inquiring About Your Benefits
You can check your mental health coverage by calling your insurance company directly with the following questions:
Do I have out-of-network benefits?
Is there a deductible? Has it been met?
Is there a co-insurance amount for which I am responsible?
How many sessions per calendar year does my plan cover?
How much does my plan cover per therapy session?
Questions about your bill
What billing or insurance information will I receive?
You are responsible for learning about your health care coverage, and can do so by phoning the number on the back of your health insurance card. When you pay Dr. Vasquez directly and submit claims on your own, she will provide you with a "superbill" which is suitable for submission to your insurance company.
How long will it take to get reimbursement from the insurance company?
Generally, it takes from 45 to 60 days to obtain payment from an insurance carrier. It can take up to 90 days in some instances; you should be certain to ask when you phone to inquire about your benefits.
I received a notice that my insurance company has paid on my bill -- but I can't understand how they calculated their payment amount. Do you know?
If I have received any such information from your insurance company, I'll be glad to share it with you. However, for answers to any questions about insurance payments, deductibles, or co-payments, you generally need to check with your insurance company.
compassion. experience. quality.