-How do I schedule an appointment?
Please feel free to call us, but know that you can also click on the "client portal" for an existing client or the "make an appointment" button for new clients and simply schedule an appointment online.
-How do I choose the right therapist?
There is a great deal of evidence that a good fit between a therapist and client is essential to good outcomes from therapy - that it isn't just about having the knowledge, but having the relational connection. If you think about this, it is very different than other professions and services. In therapy, I encourage you to shop around. It may be that the first therapist you meet is a great fit. If so, fantastic! Therapy does not work without full disclosure of the problems you are facing. If you do not trust and feel comfortable with your therapist, you are not likely to be fully open to the process. Find someone wise and nonjudgmental, but also someone caring and warm. However, don't neglect the science - be sure to ask your therapist the approach they will be taking and if they are using an approach that has some research backing regarding good outcomes.
-Should I see a therapist, a medication prescriber, or both?
You are going to find that there are many types of therapists. Some examples will include LPC's, LMFT's, LCSW's, and Licensed Psychologists PhDs or PsyD's). Each of these examples of providers is qualified to provide therapy. I would highly recommend that you work with someone licensed, and go to the state of CO DORA website to verify their license - you can do this for any of our providers at Plankeel Counseling, LLC. If you are not currently on psychotropic medication, it is often a good idea at some point to see if your therapist recommends that you see a prescriber. We do not prescriber medicine at Plankeel Counseling, LLC. Examples of prescribers will include your PCP or primary care doctor, and then mental health prescribing specialists that might have the letters of PA, NP / APRN, or a Psychiatrist, MD. For certain mental health problems, it is best to work with both a therapist and a prescriber. Examples would be Bipolar Disorder or Schizophrenia. This is a complicated topic, but do know that not every mental health problem will require any medicine for treatment. In fact, very often it is best to see if therapy alone reduces your symptoms as the starting point. If you really aren't sure, please give us a call and we'd be happy to offer some consultation in making this decision.
-Tell me about your no-show and cancellation policy.
Please understand that we only schedule between 4-8 clients a day for one-hour or 90-minute sessions. Given this, it is very important that we have ample notice for cancellations so that we are able to offer this time to other clients. Therefore, we do charge half of the standard session fee for each provider if you do not call at least 24 hours in advance to cancel your appointment. For Jeff, this will be $70 (Jeff's full fee is $140) and for Beth, this will be $55 (Beth's full fee is $110). We do offer online scheduling so that you are able to easily change your appointment time using this calendar service without waiting for a return call. You may access that calendar within this website by clicking on either Client Portal or Make an Appointment. You may also text your provider to cancel and reschedule appointments. Thanks for your understanding.
-How does insurance work in your particular office?
Currently, we are in-network with various insurances. Jeff Plankeel is on with Cigna, Medicare, Tricare, Aetna, and BCBS. Beth Kirk-Small, LMFT takes UnitedHealthCare, Aetna, and Cigna for insurance clients. Beth and Jeff both accept private or cash pay clients. We will bill your insurance for you electronically. You are responsible for your deductible if you have one, and your copay. For some clients, neither will apply and your insurance will cover the full cost of your sessions.
If you have a deductible, your provider will bill your insurance and they will apply the cost of your session until your deductible is met. Once your deductible is met, you will only be responsible for your copay if you have one. Therapy copays are considered under the "specialist" category.
-How does payment work?
For private or cash-pay clients and clients with copays, we take credit cards, debit cards, checks, or cash. All clients are required to have a credit card on file in their electronic chart. We will electronically bill your insurance for payment. Payment is expected at the time of service if you do not have insurance, and your copay is expected at the time of service if you do have insurance. You can enter your credit card information in the client portal to keep on file, and we will only charge this for copays, no-shows, or with your approval for session fees in the case of cash pay clients or clients with deductibles. This does not bind you to use your card for payment - it just makes it simple if you do choose to use your card as we will not have to ask you for payment every session. For clients scheduling their first appointment, we do require a credit card on file in case of a no-show. The fee will be half of your clinician's standard session fee if you do not show up for an appointment ($70 for Jeff and $55 for Beth). We can charge your HSA, FSA, or Debit cards if you prefer over using the credit card on file.
-Is therapy private?
The law protects the privacy, referred to as confidentiality, of communications between a mental health practitioner and his or her clients. There are a few exceptions:
* A therapist is mandated to report child abuse or dependent adult or elder abuse to the appropriate authorities.
* A therapist has what is called a "duty to warn" when there is a strong indication that a client has the intent to do bodily harm or kill another person. Typically, this involves notifying the police or warning the individual who may be in harm's way.
* If a client has an intention to do serious bodily harm or kill themselves, a therapist is required to intervene to make a plan for safety. At times, this may involve what is called involuntary hospitalization. More typically, though, we are able to work a plan out together that is voluntary and assures your safety. This does not apply to mere thoughts of hurting oneself, but to actual intent to do so. This may also apply when someone is so impaired that caring for themselves is not possible - something called grave disability.
When using insurance, insurance can only be billed if you have a diagnosable condition. We do send a diagnosis and therapy code to your insurance company, but we do not routinely disclose medical records to insurance. For 100% privacy of care, some clients choose to cash or private pay so as not to have any disclosure to insurance companies.