Frequently Asked Questions
Equine Assisted Services
Why would I want to participate in equine sessions?
Most clients who choose to add equine sessions to their treatment plan find that they are able to make rapid progress in areas where they were previously stuck in traditional talk therapy.
Do I have to have any riding experience to do equine sessions?
No. No prior experience with horses is necessary. Equine therapy has very little to do with horsemanship.
What if I'm afraid of horses?
That's okay. All clients are able to move at their own comfort level and sometimes equine therapy is just the thing to help people work through those fears.
Will I get to ride the horses?
Many of the exercises are done on the ground with the horses. There are some mounted exercises and sometimes riding is weaved into the lesson.
What is the difference between Equine Assisted Psychotherapy and Equine Assisted Learning?
Equine Assisted Psychotherapy must be facilitated by at least one of the providers being a licensed professional authorized to practice psychotherapy and the clients are typically receiving therapy for a mental health or substance abuse problem.
Equine Assised Learning is more for personal growth or for leadership and development training and it does not require that at least one facilitator be a licensed professional in the behavioral health field.
Equine Assisted Psychotherapy and Equine Assisted Learning were both offered at Veritas Counseling Center, LLC.
Do you provide telephone sessions, online therapy or skype services?
*No. The therapist believes that without the ability to see nonverbal communication signals and/or hear voice tone, much of the therapeutic relationship is unable to develop. Studies have shown that one of the highest predictors of successful outcomes in psychotherapy is not the actual method or technique but rather the client's experience of a positive and healthy therapeutic relationship with the therapist. This is very difficult to establish in an online format.
There were certain occasional exceptions when ongoing clients were traveling or experiencing a crisis where telephone sessions were available for those purposes. Telephone and crisis intervention services were not available when clients had not yet been seen in the office.
*When COVID-19 hit Arizona in March of 2020, telephone sessions were provided to current in-office clients in order to continue their therapy sessions in the safest possible manner and comply with Arizona executive orders regarding essential services and also rules granting temporary permissions for teletherapy. Those clients were eventually either terminated by mutual agreement having reached their therapy goals or transferred to other therapists upon the subsequent retirement of the therapist at Veritas Counseling Center LLC. With virtual sessions having become the norm and many therapists being trained in this format now, it is hoped that clients worldwide are getting their needs met in these very challenging times.
Do you offer free counseling or have a sliding scale?
No. Clients who were unable to afford fees were referred to agencies that did offer sliding scale options.
What are your fees? Do you take my insurance?
Potential clients could find answers to specific questions about fees and insurance on a separate page. What many clients don't realize when using their insurance is that they first have to meet the criterion for a diagnosis of a mental disorder and that if pre-existing conditions are ever not covered again, they may be unable to continue therapy due to having had treatment before. Also, most insurance companies limit the number of sessions and often control the type of treatment methods that are covered under each specific plan. Many clients also don't realize they must first meet a deductible amount before their sessions would be covered by the insurance company and/or that not all diagnosis or specific providers are covered in every plan. The therapist at Veritas Counseling Center believed that private fees should be kept affordable to those who chose to seek help outside of their insurance network and that the privacy and autonomy available in out of network services outweighed the constrictions of managed care.
What happens to my records when the practice is closed?
Do you work with children?
Not younger children. The practice was limited to adults and adolescents with occasional exceptions for pseudomature "tweens".
Where are you located?
The office was originally located in the Metro Commerce Center in Northwest Phoenix on 28th Drive just north of the former Metro Center Mall. The office was then moved to North Phoenix in the Union Centre Suites on Union Hills Drive until it was closed in 2020.
What are your office hours?
Office hours were Monday through Thursday by appointment only. Some early morning and evening appointments were available. Equine sessions were typcially scheduled in the afternoons during the week or sometimes in the evenings.
What are the differences between psychiatrists, psychologists, psychoanalysts, psychotherapists, therapists, counselors, and coaches and how do I decide which one to go see?
Many clients are confused by all these different titles. Some of them overlap but there are some distinct differences in terms of degrees and qualifications as well as the specific services provided.
Psychiatrists are medical doctors (M.D., D.O., etc) who received additional training to specialize in psychiatry. They typically have approximately 12 years of college education. Their primary roles are to provide psychiatric evaluations and prescribe psychotropic medication for clients when needed. Some psychiatrists also provide psychotherapy but most simply prescribe medications and often have clinicians in their office that provide the talk therapy. Family physicians and nurse practitioners are also able to prescribe psychotropic medications but psychiatrists typically have a more specialized practice in medication for mental health symptoms.
Psychologists have doctorate (PhD, PsyD, etc) degrees that require usually a minimum of two additional years of school beyond a master's degree. They are allowed to use the title of "Dr." but are not medical doctors. In addition to providing psychotherapy, psychologists often offer psychological testing that evaluates intellectual, mental, emotional, and social functioning.
Psychoanalysts are therapists (often who are also psychologists) that specialize in a treatment approach called psychoanalysis. Psychoanalysis is one of the original forms of mental health treatment and typically focuses on uncovering the individual unconscious dynamics that maintain current symptoms. Psychoanalysis is typically long term treatment.
Psychotherapists are clinicians who are authorized to provide psychotherapy that may include individual, couples, family and group therapy. They may be psychologists, psychiatrists, and nurse practitioners, or they may be master's level therapists and counselors. The master's level psychotherapists hold various master’s degrees in a number of different disciplines including clinical social work, professional counseling, marriage and family therapy, and education (MSW, MC, MFT or MFCC, MEd, MA, MS, etc.) Some states require that these professionals be licensed to provide psychotherapy and some states have voluntary certifications. Arizona originally had voluntary certification and began requiring licensure in July of 2004.
Other therapists and counselors include substance abuse and addiction counselors, pastoral counselors, rehab counselors, and guidance counselors. These professionals may hold any number of degrees from a one or two year certification to master's and doctorate level degrees depending on their specific training. They also may be qualified to provide psychotherapy in addition to their specialty. They may or may not be certified in their specific field of practice and they often are certified or licensed in more than one field of practice (professional counseling and substance abuse counseling for example).
Coaching is a relatively newer form of guidance that is designed to motivate clients to achieve their goals and potential rather than focusing on problems and symptoms. Many coaches are also professional therapists and counselors but not all of them are. There is typically no formal education that is required to become a coach and many coaches offer both motivational and spiritual counseling.
Please note that this is a general description of the various differences and that often professionals have numerous services that they are qualified to provide. You have a right to know the specific qualifications including training and experience of the provider you choose
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Veritas Counseling Center, LLC • Phoenix, Arizona