1. What are your credentials and what do they allow you to do?
I am credentialed to provide mental health care in North Carolina as a doctorate-level Licensed Clinical Mental Health Counselor Supervsior.
Licensed Clinical Mental Health Counselors are trained to provide psychological assessment and treatment for a wide range of mental health problems in children, families, adults, and couples. They are required to earn a master or doctorate degree in counseling, psychology or a related field, complete graduate internships, and pass the National Counseling Exam. Prior to receiving full licensure, LCMHC’s must also complete at least 3,000 hours of supervised professional practice and receive a minimum of 100 hours of clinical supervision.
The additional certification as a Supervisor allows LCMHC’s to provide clinical supervision to others seeking to become credentialed. This requires five years of clinical experience and at least 45 hours of training in the field of clinical supervision as well as continuing education in the supervision field every two years.
I am also credentialed as a Registered Play Therapist-Supervisor, a certification that involves extensive training, experience, and supervision using play therapy methods to treat children with developmental and mental health conditions. You can read more about play therapy in the Play Therapy section of this website.
2. Are you part of a group practice?
Although I’ve been practicing with some of my colleagues for close to 20 years, we each maintain our own independent practices. I own the building in which we practice and lease offices to my colleagues. Also in the office are Amy Swaim, LCSW; Susan Ehrlich, LCSW; Nadia Vasu, LCSW; Rachel Marshall, LCMHC; Lisa Muhs, LCMHC; Dhruti Dholakia, LCMHC; Sharon Hahn, LCMHC; Pippa Humphrey, LCSW; and Kim Marley, LCSW.
3. What is your theoretical orientation or the foundation through which you view treatment?
I draw from various modalities when working with individuals, dependent upon presenting issues, assessment data, and best practice standards (i.e., modalities informed by research). Please read my Therapy Methods document for more information.
4. Can we speak over the phone first so that I may determine if we are a good match?
It is important for those seeking counseling to find a clinician with whom they feel comfortable. In fact, research on counseling outcomes indicate that a significant factor for predicting counseling success involves a positive relationship between client and clinician. I welcome the opportunity to speak with potential clients over the phone to determine if we are a good match.
5. What are your fees?
My fee for the initial evaluation session is $170.00 and subsequent treatment sessions are $150.00 per one hour session. I am an out-of-network provider for insurance carriers which means that I accept payment upfront for services and provide clients with a receipt they may use to file with their insurance carrier. Please note that fees are reviewed annually and subject to revision.
On occasion I treat child clients through obtaining a Single Case Agreement with their insurance carriers. These agreements allow clients to see non-contracted providers under specific circumstances. I’ve had Single Case Agreements on several occasions with Aetna, Cigna, and United Behavioral Health due to certification as a Registered Play Therapist and a specialization in treating developmental trauma and reactive attachment disorder in very young children.
When working with children adopted from foster care in North Carolina I often bill state adoption subsidy funding. This funding is available for children adopted from foster care and can be requested through the county in which the child was adopted.
Additionally, I offer a sliding scale fee for a limited number of clients who do not have insurance coverage or have special circumstances.
6. What are your office hours and availability?
I do my best to accommodate all referrals, but oftentimes I do not have immediate availability. I maintain a waiting list for those who are able to wait. If the need is urgent and I cannot fit individuals into my schedule, I typically refer them to colleagues who are matched to their needs.
I typically am in the office Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and every other Friday. I am generally not in the office on Wednesdays.
7. Do you provide court testimony?
I have provided expert witness testimony a handful of times in Wake County Court regarding child custody disputes, alleged child abuse cases, and termination of parental right hearings. In such cases I have been involved as a the treating therapist for children and my responsibility has been to provide information to the court regarding children’s mental health.
My responsibility as a treating therapist does not involve providing child custody evaluations or providing specific recommendations to the court about termination of parental rights or child custody. Furthermore, I do not provide forensic services (e.g., competency to stand trial, sanity evaluations). Those seeking forensic services or child custody evaluations should seek the services of another clinician. I can provide references of well-trained clinicians in these areas when needed.
8. Do you provide faith-based counseling?
I am not certified as a faith-based counselor, nor do I hold a degree in pastoral counseling. I do, however, frequently service families of various religious and spiritual orientations, including those of Christian, Jewish, and Buddhist faiths, among others. Many individuals identify their faith as a guiding principle in their lives, and in such cases I enjoy working collaboratively with families to incorporate their faith into the counseling process should they wish to do so.
9. Do you service individuals regardless of race, ethnicity, ability level, or sexual orientation?
I believe it is critically important to be inclusive and culturally competent as a professional counselor. Furthermore, competency is a requirement of the Licensed Clinical Mental Health Counselor board. It involves course work and continued education in multicultural counseling to assist in understanding how one’s own cultural background influences one’s attitude towards others, the impact of racism and discrimination on society and individuals, and training in culturally sensitive assessment and intervention strategies with individuals and families.
I welcome the opportunity to explore how race, ethnicity, ability level, sexual orientation, and/or gender orientation are relevant to individuals seeking services.