There is often confusion about the many different healthcare providers that provide “therapy.” Psychotherapy from a psychiatrist or any other medical doctor is covered by OHIP, and will thus not cost you anything. Services obtained from other health care professionals (e.g., psychologists, social workers) may also be free if they are offered in government-funded hospitals, clinics or agencies.
If psychotherapists work in a private practice, their services will not be covered by OHIP, and you will be charged a fee. The fee will vary depending on the therapist's experience and training and the type of therapy. (Group therapy may be less expensive.) Some therapists offer a sliding scale, which means that they can offer a reduced fee based on your income. Fees may also be covered through an extended health care plan or private insurance. (You may have a benefits plan through your work.) Some of these plans may only cover services up to a certain amount and for certain types of therapists (e.g., psychologists but not social workers). If you are working in a large organization, you may have access to an employee assistance program (EAP)--sometimes referred to as an employee and family assistance program (EFAP). If you are a student, counselling services will most likely be provided by your high school, college or university. Some communities also have free clinics, support groups and drop-in centres that offer counselling. However, many free services have long waiting lists.
As mentioned, the majority of extended health benefits/employer benefits; however, do cover psychotherapy and social work services (typically in your health and dental insurance package). I encourage you to speak with your insurance provider about counselling services provided by a Registered Social Worker and Psychotherapist to determine your eligibility and approved rates of coverage. Further, as of 2012, Psychotherapy services provided by Registered Social Workers is now recognized as an income tax deductible medical expense by Revenue Canada. Please consult this list for more information.
The fee per therapy session is based on the standard rates for psychotherapists in the Greater Toronto Area, which tends to range between $100 and $250 per session depending on the therapist's education and experience.
At Sandy Rao Therapy the rate is $180 for initial assessment (90 minutes) and $120 per 50 minute individual session. Monthly packages can be purchased at $100 per 50 minute individual session for 5 sessions. Sessions must be used within the month and paid, in full, in advance. Receipts are provided for benefits reimbursement.
We do provide a sliding scale if you are without any income (documents will need to be provided) or in a harmful situation. These sessions are limited and are reviewed in a case by case basis. Please ask about our good karma sessions if you are in need.
All payments are done via e-transfer. This is done to ensure confirmation of payment through your own financial institution, for your own tracking purposes and that there is no time spent in session doing financial and administrative activities. All payments must be received before session begins or your session will be cancelled and you will be charged a cancellation fee.