What to Expect

Confidentiality

In accordance to the CPCA code of ethics 2.6 Confidentiality Requirement Counsellors keep information related to counselling services confidential with the following noted exceptions: (a) files are demanded under a subpoena for the court; (b) the client reports current, active suicidal/homicidal intent; (c) the client &/or counsellor are at risk of harm; (d) the client reports current (not historical) suspected abuse or neglect of a vulnerable person in which case, without further recourse to the client, the relevant information is disclosed to the appropriate authority in the jurisdiction in which the client resides.


STEP 1

OPTIONAL 30 MINUTE COMPLIMENTARY CONSULTATION

If you are unsure about counselling or the counselling process, I offer a complimentary consultation in order for you to feel comfortable prior to committing to the therapeutic process.

During this informal meeting we will discuss your goals in seeking counselling to ensure you that I am the appropriate fit for your needs. This consultation is also a perfect time to address any questions you may have. You can then decide if therapy is something you wish to invest in. If yes, we will book your first appointment at a time that suits your schedule.

STEP 2

FIRST 50-55 MINUTE SESSION

During your first session we will go through a client intake form and ask important questions to get a better understanding of your personality and a greater understanding of the nature you have to seeking counselling. The objective of the first session is for you and I to get to know one another and collaborate in establishing your short and long-term goals. We will then discuss a treatment plan and (if applicable) a recommended duration of counselling sessions.

STEP 3 SUBSEQUENT SESSIONS

WEEKLY OR BIWEEKLY SESSIONS

After your initial session we will meet regularly to explore and work towards achieving your goals. I will structure the sessions to fit your particular personality and learning style by utilizing a number of Counselling and Psychotherapy methodologies.

I will always ask how you are feeling at the end of each session to ensure you are comfortable with the direction and progress. All sessions will be 50-55 minutes in length (unless you are participating in an intensive, 3 hour focused therapy session).

I honor and respect every client’s boundaries and desire for what they want out of counseling. I find that the best work is achieved when the trust you and I have built together is strong. This allows your therapy to evolve as you do.

STEP 4

WRAP UP

During the last session of your recommended treatment plan we will evaluate progress made to-date and re-cap any important learning/discoveries throughout the course of your therapeutic journey. We will also evaluate where you are now and how you are feeling.

Counselling and psychotherapy are so individualized and everyone can require a different amount of time, therefore I may recommend you continue with another treatment plan, either with myself, or I may recommend alternative resources that best fit where you are at the end of your treatment plan. However, if you have made a significant amount of progress and you are feeling comfortable and more confident, we will conclude the session by reminding you that you are always welcome back for a check-in session at any time.


Informed Consent

I would like to take this moment to express what I believe to be one of the most important pieces in the counselling/client relationship, and that is informed consent. The following information is directly quoted from the association that I as registered with, the Canadian Professional Counsellors Association; the Code of Ethics:

Informed consent for services
When counsellors conduct research or provide assessment, therapy, counseling, or consulting services in person or via electronic transmission or other forms of communication, they obtain the informed consent of the individuals using language that is reasonably understandable to that person or persons except when conducting such activities without consent is mandated by law or governmental regulation or is otherwise provided in this Ethics Code.

(a) Informed Consent may be appropriately obtained in several ways, but in all cases, the dynamic
nature of counselling practice requires ongoing and informed consent throughout the therapy
process. Session documentation includes the specific note, initialed by the counsellor, that
consent was discussed with, and obtained from, the client for each phase, change, or variation as
the therapy proceeds. Notation of consent in the clinical documentation should be sufficient to
eliminate the need to ask the client to sign a new written consent form each time consent is
required.

(b) Informed Consent may be obtained in writing (signed agreement) or by verbal agreement after
discussion and in some cases, by inference. In the latter case, the onus is on the provider of the
service to demonstrate that this form of consent was given. In all cases, whatever format
through which consent is obtained, session documentation accurately reflects each instance.

(c) When obtaining consent to therapy counsellors inform clients as early as is feasible
(first/primary session) in the therapeutic relationship about the nature and anticipated course
of therapy, fees, involvement of third parties, and limits of confidentiality and provide sufficient
opportunity for the client/patient to ask questions and receive answers.

(d) When obtaining informed consent for online therapy, the client is provided with the knowledge
necessary to understand the ways in which e-Therapy differs from conventional psychotherapy.
Limitations to online therapy, contingency plans for extraordinary circumstances, and financial
policies are discussed and documented.

(e) When obtaining consent from those to whom they provide services before recording their
voice and/or image. Counsellors inform their clients/patients of the purpose and length of time
the recordings will be kept.

(f) When obtaining informed consent for treatment for which generally recognized techniques and
procedures have not been established, Counsellors inform their clients/patients of the
developing nature of the treatment, the potential risks involved, alternative treatments that may
be available, and the voluntary nature of their participation.

(g) When the Counsellor is a trainee and the legal responsibility for treatment provided resides
with the supervisor, the client/patient, as part of the informed consent procedure, is informed
that the Counsellor is in training and is being supervised and is given the name of the
supervisor.

~ Canadian Professional Counselors Association~