Popular Questions

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What does the ‘SJ’ in The SJ Psychology Centre stand for?

Although many people assume that the SJ refers to Saint John, it actually has a double meaning referring to Saint John AND the initials of our business founder, Dr. Susan Jane Walsh!

The SJ Psychology Centre offers services by both Psychologists and Counsellors. What is the difference between the two?

Psychologists at the SJPC are licensed with the College of Psychologists of New Brunswick (CPNB). A psychologist has post-graduate training in Clinical Psychology (i.e., Doctoral or Master's degree). They are trained in the assessment, diagnosis, and treatment of mental health problems. The formal assessments they do include psychological testing.

Counsellors at the SJPC have a Master's degree in some form of Counselling. They are regulated by the College of Licensed Counselling Therapists of New Brunswick. Counsellors are qualified to provide various forms of therapy services to treat a variety of mental health disorders. They are not able to assess or diagnose mental health conditions. 

What is a psychologist? How do they differ from psychiatrists?

Psychologists at the SJPC are licensed with the College of Psychologists of New Brunswick. A psychologist has post-graduate training (i.e., a Master’s or Doctoral degree) in the assessment and treatment of mental health problems. Psychologists use various form of psychotherapy (“talk therapy”) to treat mental health disorders and they do NOT prescribe medication.

Psychiatrists are medical doctors who have completed a residency in Psychiatry. Psychiatrists are trained in the medical management of psychiatric disorders including medication.

Do I need a referral to see a psychologist or licensed counselling therapists at the SJ Psychology Centre?

The SJPC does not require a referral from individuals who are self-referring for assessment or therapy services. However, your insurance company may require a referral in order to provide coverage for psychological services. 

How do I find a psychologist who is right for me?

Currently, the SJPC has three psychologists and one counsellor. Our office manager will assist you in determining which psychologist is best-suited to your individual needs. For this reason, he will need to collect basic information from you regarding the nature of your mental health difficulties when you contact us to schedule an appointment.

How long will it take to get an appointment with a psychologist?

Wait-times vary depending on the individual psychologist and the number of referrals. Unfortunately, there is a shortage of psychologists across our province, which means that there can be a wait for our services. Every effort is made to accommodate clients as soon as possible. 

What can I expect at my first treatment session?

You will be asked to complete a brief intake questionnaire at the time of your first session. If possible, please arrive 10-15 minutes early for this first session as a result. First sessions usually last approximately 50 minutes. 

Are psychological services covered by Medicare or my private insurance?

Unfortunately, our services are not covered by Medicare. However, many people have some coverage for psychological services through their personal insurance plans. The amount of coverage varies across plans. You may want to contact your insurer to determine what services are covered by your plan, how much coverage your plan offers, whether a referral is required for reimbursement, and whether your coverage goes by calendar year or per 12-month period. 

Services provided by Residents in Psychology are billed under the licensed supervising psychologist and are therefore covered by most extended health care plans. 

Does The SJ Psychology Centre direct bill my insurance company?

Direct billing is available for clients covered by Blue Cross Insurance. We are happy to provide a receipt for other providers. 

How can I pay for my appointment?

We accept cash, debit, e-transfer, and credit (Visa, Mastercard, and American Express).

Is everything I say to my psychologist or counsellor confidential?

Information collected by psychologists or licensed counselling therapists is generally considered confidential. Psychologists/licensed counselling therapists are obligated to maintain client confidentiality unless:

o You are at risk to hurt yourself or someone else (e.g., suicide, child abuse)

o The psychologist is required by law to disclose information (e.g., the psychologist receives a subpoena)

o The psychologist learns that you have been abused by a health care professional

There are also instances where information about a client’s diagnosis, treatment progress, and prognosis are shared with relevant third-party payers (e.g., WorkSafeNB). Your psychologist/licensed counselling therapist will always share with you whether and what information may be released. 

Does the SJPC provide emergency services?

The SJ Psychology Centre does not provide emergency mental health services. In the event of an emergency, individuals should go to their local emergency department. Individuals may also contact the Mobile Mental Health Crisis Line at 1-888-811-3664.

How old do I need to be to consent to psychological assessment or treatment?

The Province of New Brunswick requires that individuals be at least 16 years old in order to consent to receive psychological services. Consent by a parent or guardian is required for individuals younger than 16 years old. 

Are the SJ Psychology Centre offices wheelchair-accessible?

Yes. We have a small wheelchair ramp into our reception area. Please contact our office manager at 506-632-3110 for additional details regarding access. 

Am I able to schedule an appointment in the evenings?

Schedules vary according to the individual psychologist. Several SJPC associates offer evening appointments. Please inform our office manager if you require a psychologist who can accommodate this schedule. 

Do you offer services in French?

Dr. Walsh provides services in both English and French.