Frequently Asked Questions
Psychotherapists provide the services most people think of when they picture a Psychologist. Clients reach out with various challenges, we work to clarify what needs to change, and do the weekly “in the trenches” work together to get a shift. This incorporates strategies to calm our bodies, change our thought patterns, and interrupt unconscious cycles. Often it’s sitting on our couch, once a week.
In 2015, Psychotherapy became a regulated title in Ontario. This means that we, as Registered Psychotherapists (RPs), have a governing body monitoring ethics, practice standards, and education. To be an RP in Ontario, you must have both a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in a relevant field, and pass standardized exams to enter into practice. New grads must complete supervised practice before being able to work independently, and ongoing professional education is required. Our referrals, advertising, and privacy standards are also guided by the College of Registered Psychotherapists of Ontario (CRPO). Our team is made up of RPs in full membership and good standing.
Therapist / Counsellor / Life Coach are all unprotected terms – meaning anyone can identify and advertise as such regardless of their training and experience.
Psychologists have a Doctoral degree; Psychological Associates have a Master’s level education. In practice, Psychologists and Psychological Associates primarily focus on testing /assessments and diagnostics.
Psychiatrists are Medical Doctors with a specialty in Psychiatry (similar to how one could specialize in surgery, etc). Their role is primarily prescribing and managing medication.
Individual, Couple and Family appointments are all billed at $195 (including HST) per 50-minute appointment. Services provided by a Registered Psychotherapist are covered by almost all private health benefit plans. Psychotherapy can also be claimed as a health expense on your taxes.
Our goal is to work with you to maximize efficiency and make sure your services are highly cost-effective. This means we typically recommend appointments be closer together at the start (think weekly) to kick-start progress and then spacing out as we go. The timing will depend on how you’re feeling and is always ultimately up to you.
It’s totally normal to be a bit uncertain about what to expect at your first appointment. Once you’ve reached out, we’ll email or call to confirm and check in.
When you visit our office, let yourself into the waiting room, grab a coffee or tea, and have a seat. We don’t have a receptionist, so your therapist will come out and introduce themselves when they’re finished with their previous appointment.
At your first appointment, we’ll go over what’s up; getting a 15-20 minute history about what you’re looking for help with, how that’s developed over time, what things you’ve tried so far (that either worked or didn’t!) and 15-20 minutes on general “get to you know you” stuff (family, school, work, etc). At the end of that appointment, we’ll be able to establish an outline of what you’re looking for, and what we suggest to get there.
Psychotherapy is completely confidential – including our booking systems, online appointments, software, and notes & records, whether on paper or within the Jane app. All your information with us is protected under the PHIPPA guidelines for healthcare information. (LINK: https://jane.app/guide/privacy-and-security/privacy-compliance-for-clinics-in-ontario) The only exceptions, under which we’re legally obligated to provide information to someone else to ensure safety are 1) risk of suicide 2) risk of harm to another person 3) risk of abuse or neglect to a child under 16 4) if records are subpoenaed.
Choosing to do therapy virtually or in-person mostly comes down to preference, although research may be starting to suggest that there are unique benefits to attending in-person. Having a quiet, confidential office space to attend therapy can make it easier to speak freely, and it can be nice to have a space apart from your “real life” to process difficult things. It also allows for a concrete transition back to your daily routine when you leave the office.
Research comparing online and in-person therapy is still very new, but indicators show that online conversations use less activity in our full brain compared to in-person interactions. This could potentially suggest that changing our ways of thinking and making new neural connections may be done more easily in face-to-face encounters. We are committed to offering a peaceful, non-judgmental office space. We have also always offered online appointments for continuity of care (students moving to university, etc) and will continue to do so for those who prefer it due to distance, schedule or other factors.
Almost all benefit plans cover the services of Registered Psychotherapists (RPs). While JuniperTree doesn’t direct-bill insurance, you can pay and submit for reimbursement with nearly all plans. Since all insurance companies and employers offer different packages, please double check your amount of coverage (and is it annual? Per person?) to ensure your sessions will be covered. Upon payment through our Jane app system, your receipt will be immediately emailed so you can make your claim.
Appointments are 50 minutes long, with 10 minutes for scheduling, notes and admin tasks to support your service. We run punctually to respect everyone’s time.
Everyone’s needs are different, so it’s hard to give a clear answer. We typically recommend starting out with appointments closer together (think weekly) to kick-start progress and get cumulative benefit. Then as things start to shift and you feel like you’re more in a “maintenance phase” it can often make sense to space appointments out as you phase out of therapy. The timing will depend on how you’re feeling and is always ultimately up to you. You’ll be able to get a more specific recommendation when we get to know you at your first appointment.
Things can change, so JuniperTree offers a 24 hour cancellation policy. If you need to change an appointment, let us know by making the update in the Jane app, or leaving an email or voicemail and we can reschedule. Late cancellations and missed appointments will be automatically billed via the Jane app system.