1. What can I expect at the first counseling session?

At the first session the client will arrive a few minutes early to complete the intake paperwork. The client will provide a copy of their insurance card and driver’s license for record keeping purposes. Payment is always collected prior to the start of the therapy session and follow up appointments are made after each session. The therapist and client will meet for 45 to 50 minutes to begin the process of assessing the client’s reasons for entering therapy. Follow up sessions will focus on developing a treatment plan that includes goals created in collaboration with the client.When the client is fifteen years or younger, the initial session usually includes the client’s parents (both parents if possible, whether or not the parents are married or divorced) alone, with the client entering the session toward the end. If the child is under the age of 12 or cannot be allowed to remain in the waiting room alone, the first session is typically held with the parents alone.

Every journey begins with the first step.

2. How do I choose a therapist?

Choosing the right therapist is imperative for the growth that the client seeks through counseling. While the majority of clients are forced to follow the guidelines and provider lists offered by their insurance companies, they should still be discerning in the selection process. Most therapists offer a sliding fee scale for patients wishing to choose a therapist based solely on preference instead of insurance participation.

The client should look at the first session as an interview process in some ways. It is very appropriate for the client to ask the therapist questions about the therapist’s experience with issues such as the ones the client presents, what the therapist’s favorite therapeutic models are, and what the therapist will use in establishing goals for the client. A well-trained therapist seeks to educate and partner with their client to promote long-term change and growth for that client.

3. What insurance plans are accepted at Summit Mental Health Service?

Summit Mental Health Services does not accept insurance and accepts only self-pay, by check/cash or Venmo payment. To schedule your first appointment, call (352) 247-2385.  We also support students working to meet their academic goals through participation in the Personal Learning Scholarship Account (PLSA) program.

4. What about confidentiality if I use insurance?

Your therapist will not release information regarding your identity, diagnosis or treatment as required in accordance with HIPAA (seehttps://www.hhs.gov/hipaa/ for more information). If you utilize insurance benefits to cover the cost of your treatment it is important to know that your insurance carrier does require diagnosis information and will occasionally do reviews of treatment plans and clinical notes to validate the necessity of your mental health treatment. Such information is protected by HIPAA and not shared outside of the insurance carrier.

5. What if I am involved in ongoing litigation? Can my records be released to the court?

There are very specific circumstances under which treatment plans, appointment records, and clinical notes may be released by a judge’s court order. If you have questions about that issue be sure to address your concerns with your therapist.

Call Today to take that first step smhsclermont@gmail.com

Resentment is like drinking poison and waiting for the other person to die. Carrie Fisher