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Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Do you prescribe medication?
A: I do not prescribe medication. Although I am “Dr. Swales,” as a licensed clinical psychologist I do not practice medicine or prescribe medication. If you are considering using medication alongside your participation in psychotherapy, I am happy to refer you to a psychiatrist I can recommend.

Q: What are your fees?
A: My fee for therapy is in line with other psychologists with commensurate training, experience, and education. Information about session fees can be found in the “Services Agreement” document on the Forms page.

Q: How can I make a payment?
A: Payment is due at the beginning of each session, and can be in the form of cash or check. In extenuating circumstances, I will also accept payment via Paypal.

Health Savings Accounts and Flexible Spending Accounts – If you have a Health Savings Account (HSA) or a Flexible Spending Account (FSA), you are generally able to pay for therapy, consultation, and psychological assessment services from such accounts. In effect, this makes those services tax-deductible. Please check your specific HSA or FSA to see if any restrictions apply. 

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Q: Do you accept insurance?
A: I do not accept insurance for payment for psychotherapy services, but you may be able to use health savings account funds and out-of-network benefits to help cover the cost. Ideally, psychotherapy takes place between a psychotherapist and a patient without the intrusion of any outside party such as an insurance company. This allows for the greatest flexibility and privacy and leaves the treatment decisions up to the patient and the therapist.

Confidentiality or privacy is compromised when filing claims with an insurance because a third party is involved in your treatment. Insurance companies often demand highly detailed information about your diagnosis, symptoms, level of functioning, and progress in treatment in order to determine whether or not they will reimburse the provider.

Insurance companies can and do dictate when and how treatment should take place, including when therapy should end, regardless of the opinions or expertise of the patient or psychotherapist. Instead, by not being an in-network provider with an insurance company, we are able to work together to determine the course of treatment which will be most helpful to you, rather than leaving that up to a representative from the insurance company.

If you the use of insurance is a necessity for you, I would be considered an "out-of-network" provider. You would pay me directly and submit claims on your behalf for reimbursement (please check with your insurance company for your specific out-of-network coverage and their guidelines for submitting claims). I will provide you with documentation containing all the required information for you to submit your claim directly to your insurance company.

Q: How long are sessions and how frequently will we meet?
A: For individual adults, the initial evaluation is 55 minutes in length, and it is at this first meeting that we will determine your specific practical and treatment needs that affect how often you will engage in treatment.  

For couples seeking counseling, the initial evaluation is 75 minutes in length. 

For child patients (ages 12-17) the initial evaluation is 75 minutes in length. Before beginning we will decide in an initial brief phone consultation if for the first in-person consultation one or both parents will be present without the child or if one or both parents will be present with the child.    

With beginning patients, I hold therapy sessions at a minimum once a week.  Individuals and couples who choose to pursue once-a-week sessions can subsequently expect session duration to be between 45 and 50 minutes.  Instead of ending a session at the dot of 45 minutes past the hour, I use the end of a session as an intervention—ending upon an important note of reflection so that you can focus on that issue in between sessions.  

Higher frequency therapy sessions tend to accelerate progress and achieve greater depth of self-awareness. Individuals who pursue sessions two or more times a week may choose to have more variation in session duration depending upon their treatment needs.  

I welcome questions you may have about my practice. Please do not hesitate to email me at Info@StephanieSwalesPhd.com or call me at 469-426-4632. We will talk further to see if you would like to schedule an initial face-to-face consultation.

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Copyright 2017 Stephanie Swales PhD | Preston Commons West Tower, 8117 Preston Rd. Suite 682, Dallas, TX 75225 | P: 469-426-4632 | F: 214-265-1425 | Info@StephanieSwalesPhd.com
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