Assiniboine Psychological Group

1218 Lorette, Winnipeg Manitoba R3M 1W5

Frequently Asked Questions

The following are commonly asked questions about our staff and services. The list is a sample and is not intended to be comprehensive.

Q: What is a Clinical Psychologist?

A: A clinical psychologist is a person with a doctorate degree (Ph.D.) in psychology and the additional specialization in the clinical branch of psychology. This requires:

  Three or four years of university study to obtain a B.A. or B.A. Honours degree
  Two to three years of university study to obtain a Masters Degree in Psychology
  Four or more years of study and research to obtain the Ph.D. degree
  A one to two year internship in clinical psychology

In total, 10 to 12 years of study are typically required to complete Ph.D. training. In Manitoba, practicing clinical psychologists must be registered with the Psychological Association of Manitoba. Within clinical psychology, there are several different types of specialization. Our clinic specializes in Cognitive Behaviour Therapy which is a form of therapy focusing on the "here and now" and assisting you with "getting on with your life" in a productive way that improves your relationships and general quality of life. We provide short-term, solution-focused cognitive-behavioural treatment. Our services focus on approaches that have been supported as effective in scientific research.

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Q: What is an Associate?

A: An associate in our programs is someone who works under the supervision of a registered clinical psychologist. This person may be in training to become a clinical psychologist or could have some other type of university training in human service fields such as Social Work, Educational Psychology, health promotion or counselling in specialized areas of mind and body.

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Q: Are the fees covered by my health insurance?

A: Private psychological services are not covered by Medicare. However, they may be covered by private health insurance and extended health benefit plans provided by many employers (e.g., Blue Cross). These fees are eligible as a tax deduction, depending upon your level of eligible health expenses over the course of the year. You may want to check with your employer about what services are covered if you have a plan through your work or education program.

Receipts will be issued to you following payment after your assessment or treatment session. You may pay by cash, debit, cheque, Visa, or Master Card. Payment is due at the time services are rendered unless special arrangements are made in advance of your first visit.

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Q: What is the difference between a Clinical Psychologist and Psychiatrist?

A: Clinical psychologists and psychiatrists often work together in similar settings and see people with similar problems - anxiety and depression for example. They commonly cooperate in providing treatment to people who may need a range of different treatments. The training of psychiatrists and psychologists is usually quite different, however.

A clinical psychologist receives 10 to 12 years of university and clinical training focused on understanding human behaviour and psychological assessment and treatment of a wide range of problems. The training focuses on structured assessment methods and approaches to treatment that involve problem solving and learning. Much of the training of psychologists goes on in community programs and clinics. There is a strong emphasis on research and understanding the scientific method. If a client of a psychologist requires medical assessment or treatment, the psychologist may arrange to consult with the client's family doctor or with an appropriate medical specialist (including a psychiatrist when appropriate).

A psychiatrist has at least two or three years of general university training (often emphasizing science courses) and then goes on to complete a four year medical degree (M.D.). Following this there are four years of training in psychiatry as a medical specialty. Much of the training of psychiatrists goes on in hospitals with a good deal of experience in inpatient psychiatric units including the treatment of those with severe impairment. The training includes a strong emphasis on medication treatments for a wide variety of mental health problems. There is also training in psychological treatments with the types of treatments emphasized varying from program to program. If a psychiatrist sees a patient who requires assessment or treatment by a psychologist, the psychiatrist may arrange to consult with a psychologist who provides that service.

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Q: What are the benefits and risks of receiving therapy?

A: The benefits of participating in therapy and developing strategies to cope with everyday problems include:

Feeling less distressed/upset
Improved quality of life
Enhanced ability to cope with life's challenges
Improved self-confidence and self-esteem

The risks of therapy include:

Learning new skills and strategies to cope with problems may result in temporary increases in symptoms (e.g., anxiety may increase as you begin to deal with situations you have been avoiding)
Other aspects of your life (e.g., other relationships) may change as you develop new skills and strategies. For example, others in your life may have some difficulty adjusting to the "new" you.

It is important to remember that learning new skills and strategies requires patience, persistence, and practice on your part.

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Q: Informed consent & confidentiality

A: Information discussed in treatment sessions is strictly confidential. We are legally required to share confidential information in cases of significant risk of harm to you and/or others and abuse of a minor. Confidential information will be shared with referral sources and also may be shared with other individuals with your written consent. Associates will share information with the Supervising Clinical Psychologist as necessary.

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Dr. Vivienne Rowan

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Assiniboine Psychological Group Seating Area

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