Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
How can I pay for my sessions and will my insurance cover the cost?
At Aegis, the fee is $220 an hour. Payment is accepted by cash, cheque, debit, Mastercard, or Visa.
At this time, Aegis is able to direct bill on the behalf of clients covered under Green Shield and Pacific Blue Cross only. Clients who have extended health benefits with other insurance companies pay up front, then seek reimbursement from their insurance carrier. The services of a psychologist are not paid for by the provincial Medical Services Plan (MSP), even with the referral of a physician.
How long is a therapy session?
Sessions vary in length, with most between 1 and 1.5 clinical hours. A clinical hour is 50 minutes long.
What happens when my extended health benefits run out?
Aegis considers the amount of coverage that you have in your extended health plan when we recommend a course of treatment. The goals of treatment and number of sessions planned are adjusted accordingly. If problems arise that have not been foreseen, and a client does not have the means to pay once the benefits run out, Dr. Cook will assist in referring the client to a no fee or low fee agency. Dr. Cook is not able to offer services pro bono or on a sliding scale at this time.
What sorts of people does Dr. Cook see?
Dr. Cook sees a wide variety of people suffering from stress, anxiety and emotional intensity. Many are referred by their family physicians, friends or family members. Dr. Cook is registered with Veterans Affairs Canada to see their ex-military and ex-RCMP clients, and he also takes referrals from the Department of National Defence base hospital in Esquimalt.
Are there any clients Dr. Cook will not work with?
In general, Dr. Cook does not work with anyone whose presenting issues fall outside the boundaries of his competence, or who pose a physical threat to his safety. This includes people whose primary presenting problem is drug or alcohol-related, or who have a history of assault, respectively. In addition, Dr. Cook is selective about working with people seeking treatment for their anxiety, and who are taking benzodiazepine (e.g., Ativan, clonazepam) medication. Dr. Cook does not take referrals of people who are receiving services from ICBC or WCB.
What level of drinking does Dr. Cook consider to be unhealthy?
More than 1 drink multiple times a week, or more than 2 drinks on one occasion can be a problem for therapy.
Do I need a referral from my family physician to see a psychologist?
A referral from your physician is not needed; however, Dr. Cook prefers your doctor is informed of the referral. In some cases the client will sign a release allowing Dr. Cook to communicate with their physician.
What's the difference between a psychiatrist and a psychologist?
Psychiatrists are medically trained prior to specializing in psychiatry, whereas psychologists and are trained as researchers and clinicians. Psychologists are not medical doctors.
Can psychologists prescribe medication?
No, psychologists in BC are not licensed to prescribe medication.
Can I stop therapy at any time?
You can stop therapy at any time, preferably in consultation with Dr. Cook and after giving him 24 hours notice in advance of your next session.
What happens if I miss a session?
Individual therapy clients must inform Dr. Cook 24 hours in advance of their appointment. Otherwise, unless there is a legitimate reason for their absence such as illness, they will be billed the full session fee.