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Frequent Questions

How do I contact Dr. St. John?

The practice is open Monday- Friday except for holidays. You are welcome to call the office at any time (301) 986-8550 and if Dr. St. John is not available to take your call, you may leave a message on her confidential voicemail. Phone calls are returned at the earliest opportunity, usually within 24 hours.

Why do people seek therapy?

People come into therapy for many reasons. Some need to respond to unexpected changes in their lives, while others seek self-exploration and personal growth. When coping skills are overwhelmed by guilt, doubt, anxiety, or despair, a psychologist can help. Therapy can provide support, problem-solving skills, and enhanced coping for issues such as depression, anxiety, lack of confidence, relationship troubles, unresolved childhood issues, bereavement, spiritual conflicts, stress management, body image issues, and many other concerns. People who seek psychotherapy are willing to take responsibility for their actions, work towards self-change and create greater awareness in their lives, all of which promote feeling better.

What benefits can I expect from working with a psychologist?

A number of benefits are available from participating in therapy. Often it is helpful just to know that someone is listening to you and understands. A psychologist can provide a fresh perspective on a difficult problem or point you in the direction of a solution. Many people find therapy to be a tremendous asset in managing personal growth and self confidence, interpersonal relationships, family concerns, effectiveness in the workplace, the difficulties of daily life and finding new ways to approach problems.

What can I expect during the first appointment? During later sessions?

The first several sessions will involve an evaluation of your needs, which includes understanding what brought you to therapy, learning a bit about your background, and understanding how meetings can be of most help to you. You will also be asked to sign forms that explain client-psychologist confidentiality and general policies of the practice. By the end of the initial evaluation, Dr. St. John will be able to offer you a first impression of your situation and recommendations about what your work together will involve if you choose to continue with therapy. If you decide to work together, therapy sessions will be 50 minutes long. Most people find that one or two sessions a week is most beneficial. Some clients meet more frequently, depending on their desires and needs. Therapy sessions are unique to the individual; Dr. St. John will assist you in exploring and addressing any issue that you would like to discuss. If you have any questions or concerns about the process, you are welcome to bring them up at anytime throughout your work together.

Does Dr. St. John accept insurance?

Because Dr. St. John is a licensed clinical psychologist, her professional services qualify for reimbursement as an “out-of-network” provider under most insurance plans. As an “out-of-network” provider Dr. St. John collects fees directly from you and provides you with a statement to file with your insurance claim for your personal reimbursement. Fees are generally considered to be within the acceptable range (UCR) by most insurance companies and many health insurers provide very similar mental health reimbursement for in- and out-of-network providers. In the event that you decide to file for reimbursement, at your first appointment Dr. St. John will provide you with a list of questions to ask your insurance company.

How do I know my therapy is completely confidential?

Confidentiality is a cornerstone of the client-psychologist relationship. It is important for clients to feel secure and safe when discussing information that they want to remain confidential. Dr. St. John treats the information shared with the greatest respect. Moreover, the confidentiality of your conversations and her records are protected by standards for professional practice established by the American Psychological Association and by specific Maryland state law governing privilege and confidentiality. In your first meeting, Dr. St. John provides all potential clients with a comprehensive packet of information outlining issues of confidentiality and she is able to answer any outstanding questions or concerns that you may have.

Are you the right therapist for me?

Choosing your psychologist is an important decision. In addition to considering credentials and competence, having a good rapport is critical. Research suggests that the single most important factor in therapeutic success is the alliance, or relationship, that you have with your therapist. To help ensure a good therapeutic fit, Dr. St. John encourages prospective clients to schedule a complimentary 20-minute consultation. This consultation implies no obligation but provides a chance to discuss your situation, get a sense of whether you would enjoy working together with Dr. St. John and understand better what next steps would be most helpful for you. 

 

5480 Wisconsin Avenue | Suite 210 | Chevy Chase, MD 20815 | tel. 301-986-8550 | fax 301-986-8551
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