What is counseling/psychotherapy? Counseling is also known as psychotherapy or therapy. The American Counseling Association says “Professional counseling is the application of mental health, psychological or human development principles, through cognitive, affective, behavioral or systemic interventions and strategies that address wellness, personal growth, or career development as well as pathology.” A counseling client can expect to explore intense emotional feelings related to difficult life situations, interpersonal relationships and past experiences. Counseling is generally provided face to face with individuals, couples, families or groups.
How can counseling help me deal with my problems? Counseling can be beneficial to people in that you learn about the issues causing conflicts for you. You learn to deal with the sources of your conflict (past history, relationship conflicts, etc.) in more appropriate and positive ways. Learning what you think about yourself, how these beliefs came to be, and if they are currently true is empowering to people. Learn to take control of your life and make conscious decisions from a place of information, not fear.
How much will counseling cost me? We try to keep our fees reasonable, as they depend upon the services provided. We will be glad to provide you specific fee information during a telephone consultation prior to your first visit.
What types of payment are acceptable? We accept cash, most major credit cards, and major insurance plans. Payment is due at the time services are provided to you.
How often will I have appointments? This decision will be made by you and your therapist. Much depends upon the issues you bring to the therapy session. Generally, individual, couples and family sessions are held weekly. Group session frequencies are dependent upon the program you are involved in.
What happens if I miss or need to cancel an appointment? You may cancel your appointment by contact us at 678-261-7671. If you cancel 24 hours in advance of the scheduled appointment there is generally no problem. However if you do not keep a scheduled appointment and have not cancelled 24 hours in advance you will be held responsible for the late fee payment.
What happens if I have an emergency during or after business hours? Emergency plans will need to be set up with your therapist. If it is a crisis situation, such as having suicidal or homicidal thoughts, go to your local Emergency Room.
What if I need to see my therapist after hours or when they are out of town, or otherwise busy? Call the office at 678-261-7671 and leave a message the staff. This message will get to your therapist who will contact you as soon as feasible. When we go out of town, this information is generally given in advance, so people will know and make alternate plans.
What kind of records are kept of my sessions with my therapist? Often notes are kept by the therapist for their information. We keep track of your progress, identify issues that you are working on, new issues that come up in counseling, and what we feel would be good homework assignments. These records are for our use only. Please note, for those clients that choose to use insurance, the office discloses only the information necessary to bill for our services.
How is my privacy protected? What you tell your therapist is a privileged communication under Georgia law. This means that with a few exceptions anything you tell your therapist will remain between the two of you. The exceptions are related to supervision/consultations, imminent danger to yourself or others, information related to sexual or physical abuse of children or the elderly, and certain legal circumstances. Clinicians will occasionally consult with another therapist to get information or another perspective on a difficult case. If your case is discussed be assured your privacy is safe. We will only provide enough information to the other clinician to get an answer to our question. Therapists are mandated child or elder abuse reporters and are required by Georgia law and our ethical codes to report child abuse. Prior to or during your intake appointment we will review with you all your rights and the limits of confidentiality.
What are my rights as a client of New Focus Addiction & Behavioral Health? As a client you have the right to professional counseling services from licensed clinicians. You have a right to information about our training, theoretical orientation (how we practice therapy) and what we plan for you. You have a right to know about our expertise as well as our limitations. We will answer any professional question that you may ask, and will tell you why we won’t answer the others.
What are my obligations as a client of New Focus Addiction & Behavioral Health? Your obligations are to keep your scheduled appointments, to be truthful with yourself and your therapist, and to do the work needed to make your therapy have a positive outcome. You are responsible to pay for the professional services you receive from the clinicians at NFABH. Other responsibilities are spelled out in the intake documents provided for you before or during your first visit with us.
What are the benefits of being in counseling? The benefits of counseling are better knowledge of yourself. Learning why you do the things you do. Understanding the forces that made you who you are today and learning how to deal effectively and positively with these forces. Counseling is a process of our holding up a mirror for you to look into and discover yourself.
What are the risks of being in counseling? The risks of counseling and psychotherapy vary depending on what you bring to the therapeutic process. They are often related to the exposures you may experience during therapy including: trauma, family conflict, self-awareness, the recognition that you may have been doing things ineffectively, and other issues. Often people will say that “it gets worse before it gets better, but it does get better.”