Frequently Asked Questions about Passages

Questions most frequently asked about the Passages program:

How do I pay for for mental health therapy/counseling?

Most people choose to use their health insurance or Medicare to pay for therapy. Most health insurance plans offer a mental health benefit. As with services provided by other practitioners, you may have a co-pay for which you are responsible. Passages Counseling therapists are currently in-network providers for Medicare, Blue Cross/Blue Shield, United Healthcare, Coventry/MHNet, Aetna, Cigna, Humana, Tricare and Value Options. A diagnosis is required for submission to insurance. For most individuals, this poses no problem. Private payment is also an option. Please feel free to discuss any questions or concerns with your therapist when you schedule your first appointment or at any point in your therapy.

What can I expect will take place at the first session?

The first session provides an opportunity for your therapist to get to know you and the problems or issues you wish to address in therapy. Your therapist will want to know how long you have had your particular problems and what you may have tried in the past to address them. You will also be asked questions about your living situation, your health and habits, your family and other support system, and any previous therapy experiences. Your therapist will not judge you but will be better able to help you once she understands your unique situation. You are free to refuse to answer questions or to postpone answering them until you feel comfortable. By the end of the first session, your therapist should be able to give you feedback on how therapy might benefit you. You may also receive resource information as appropriate.

What should I bring to my first session?

Please bring your insurance and/or Medicare cards. If you are able to print and complete the New Patient forms available on this site, it will save time at your first appointment. If completing the forms is difficult for you, your therapist will get the information at the first session. A list of all the medications you take is required, so please bring one or list your medications and dosages on the health history form. If you have previously received a mental health diagnosis from another source and have any documentation, please bring it along.

How will my privacy be protected?

Protecting your privacy is of utmost concern to your therapist. Therapists only break confidentiality if they feel you pose a significant risk of harm to yourself or another person. If you and your therapist agree that it is in your best interest to collaborate, such as with your psychiatrist, physician, or an agency from which you are receiving services, you will be asked to sign a release of information form.

Can my therapist prescribe medication?

No, clinical social workers do not prescribe medication. However, you and your therapist can discuss medication needs and psychiatry referrals are available if needed.