Have a Question? Here Are Answers to The Most Frequently Asked

Q: Does it matter if a therapist is licensed and how do I distinguish between the different types of therapists?

A: Licensure laws are intended to protect the public by limiting licensure to those persons qualified to practice psychology as defined by law. The state of Florida permits basically five types of mental health clinicians to become licensed and provide services to the public – only a psychologist and psychiatrist are licensed at the doctoral level. In some cases, you may find a practitioner who holds a Ph.D. and uses the prefix “Dr.” but holds a master’s level license.

 

Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT): A therapist with a Masters or Doctoral Degree in family/marital counseling and specializes in serving persons involved in interpersonal relationships.

 

Licensed Mental Health Counselor (LMHC): A counselor with a Master’s Degree in Mental Health Counseling or a Master’s Degree in Clinical Psychology and has received training in counseling and psychotherapy techniques.

 

Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW): A counselor with a Master’s degree in Clinical Social Work and is trained in some forms of counseling and psychotherapies.

Non-licensed counselors:
Life Coach: Life coaching is a practice that helps people identify and achieve personal goals. At this time, Life Coaching is not a regulated practice meaning there are no education and training requirements or oversight by any licensure board.

Q: What is a Psychologist?

A: Psychologists are experts in the areas of human behavior, psychological assessment, diagnosis, and treatment. They employ empirically validated interventions to help patients adaptively change their thoughts, emotions, and behaviors. Psychologists adhere to a strict code of professional ethics, are vigilant regarding patient confidentiality, and make every effort to render the highest quality of care. A psychologist is a doctoral-level, licensed mental health clinician. Only a psychologist and psychiatrist are licensed at the doctoral level. Some providers may have earned a Ph.D., yet still can only be licensed at the Master’s level by applicable law.

Compared to other mental health providers, a psychologist holds the highest level of education and training available. After earning a Bachelor’s degree, the training psychologist enters a vigorous doctoral program for an average of seven years. Before earning their degree, they must complete supervised clinical rotations and internships plus at least one year of post-doctoral residency before they are eligible to take the licensure exam and practice independently. It’s this combination of education and clinical experience that distinguishes psychologists from many other mental health care providers.

Q: What is the difference between a psychologist and psychiatrist?

A: Psychologists are commonly confused with psychiatrists. A psychiatrist is trained in medicine and holds an M.D. or D.O. with prescription writing privileges. Dr. Jamie Long is a Psychologist.

Q: Does Dr. Long accept insurance?

A: Dr. Long accepts Medicare and will work with most PPO insurance plans. If you have an insurance plan with out-of-network benefits, you can see any doctor of your choosing and the plan will reimburse you a percentage. In most cases, insurance reimburses around 60-90% assuming you have a psychiatric condition meeting medical necessity criteria for treatment (to be determined during the first appointment). At the time of the therapy appointment, you are financially responsible for the service fee then Dr. Long provides an invoice to submit to the insurance company (it’s easy!).

Our office is happy to check your insurance benefits on your behalf (it only takes us a few minutes) so that you can learn exactly what is covered by your plan. In order to do this we will need your full name, date of birth, address, insurance ID number, and the phone number listed on the back of the insurance card for either provider services, behavioral health or customer service. We will give insurance a call and have the information for you asap!

Q: How do I start therapy?

A: Please feel free to request a complimentary 15-minute phone consultation to discuss any questions or details regarding the therapeutic assistance you are wishing to receive. Once you are ready to make your first therapy appointment, you can reserve time by contacting me via telephone: 954-391-5305, e-mail: dr.jamie@bayviewtherapy.com, or this website. Appointments are scheduled Monday – Friday. Evening/weekend hours can be easily arranged to accommodate those with a busy schedule.

Q: What can I expect at my 1st therapy session?

A: Your first few psychotherapy sessions will involve an evaluation of goals and needs. I will ask you what brought you into therapy and what you hope to accomplish. An initial evaluation typically gathers information about any symptoms, history/background, family/relationships and other relevant details. Whether you are seeking individual, couples, or family therapy, I will be able to offer you some first impressions of what your work will include and a treatment plan to follow at your first session.

 

I welcome your opinions of my proposed treatment plan along with your thoughts of whether you feel comfortable working with me. Therapy involves a commitment of time, money, and energy, so it’s important to carefully and thoughtfully select a therapist.

Q: How many therapy sessions will I attend?

A: Therapy is the foundation of recovery and improving psychological wellness. I meet with most of my patients on a weekly basis for meetings of 45-50 minutes in duration (or 90-minutes for couples/extended sessions). The frequency and duration of therapy sessions can be adjusted upon request or clinical recommendation to help meet individual needs.

 

How long a patient(s) will remain in therapy varies greatly and largely depends on the person/couple’s goals and needs. I can report that some patients accomplish their goals in as little as 10 sessions whereas others prefer to meet on an ongoing basis as part of their self-care. The duration of treatment is a collaborative decision.

Q: Can I bring a friend/family member with me to thearapy?

A: Overcoming life’s challenges often calls for the support and encouragement of loved ones. Significant others, family members, and other supportive individuals are welcome to engage in the treatment process. Collaboratively, we will discuss how to best incorporate your support system in psychotherapy.

Q: How much does therapy cost?

A: Therapy involves a commitment of time, energy, and money. At times, I find that it can be difficult to discuss and/or allocate funds to pay for psychotherapy. This may be caused, in part, by a negative stigma associated with receiving therapy or difficulty spending money on oneself. For many, it’s customary to accept fees associated with a medical bill or paying for the cost of a nice meal, but not for psychological health. But like any other expense that is necessary for one’s wellness and self-care, money for psychotherapy can and should be discussed openly. Consider the value of your mental health when allocating funding for therapeutic services.

 

As in any other business, compensation fees adjust periodically to reflect increased costs of living and one’s growing professional expertise. I offer 15-minute phone consultations free of charge in hopes that you can better evaluate if I am the best doctor to assist you. Please call for more information on session costs. I offer discounts for those who prefer to take advantage of pre-pay packages. Payment is due upon reservation of the appointment and cash, credit/debit cards, paypal and personal checks are acceptable forms of payment.

 

In our practice — Bayview Therapeutic Services — we have clinicians with differing credentials, varying levels of experience, and different fees for service. If you or your family is experiencing financial hardship and decide against working with myself or another one of our doctoral-level clinicians, you may consider working with one of our junior clinicians and request a sliding scale fee. Everyone in our practice holds a minimum of a Master’s degree and has been well-trained and supervised.