Frequently Asked Questions

To ask questions is to actively begin the process of change

What ages of children do you see?

Lotus and Fern caters to young people aged between 6 and 18 years old.

Do I need a referral to access your services?

While some clients are referred to Lotus and Fern by their GPs, self-referrals are welcome if you think that you or a young person in your care could benefit from these services. 

What can we expect prior to and during the first appointment?

Prior to your first appointment, you will be invited to complete a New Client Referral Form. The information you provide on this form will clarify the areas that you are seeking help with and assist in determining whether Lotus and Fern can meet your needs. Either way, Verena will contact you within three business days of receiving your completed form.

Once your first appointment has been booked in, you may be invited to complete an electronic questionnaire (sent via email). Completion of this questionnaire will assist with pre-appointment preparations and maximise your time with Verena during your first appointment.

Your first appointment will generally begin with brief introductions followed by an overview of the consent form (which includes information about confidentiality). Your areas of concern will subsequently be discussed and you will be asked lots of questions with the purpose of gathering as much information as possible about: the young person’s strengths, challenges and how they are going across different areas of their life (e.g. home, school, social activities etc.), based on different perspectives (e.g. the young person’s, their parents etc.). It is likely that for the first part of the session, Verena will see everyone in attendance (e.g. the young person and their caregivers) together. Subsequently, Verena will usually spend some time with the young person alone and the caregivers alone. This provides an opportunity for all involved to express their needs and/or concerns in a more relaxed/comfortable manner.

How much will this cost?

Because each client has unique needs, it is really difficult to provide an accurate quote for the services that may be beneficial to you prior to the initial assessment. A more personalised quote can be provided following the initial assessment. That way, you can choose the services you wish to receive, without any surprises about how much these will cost.  

Can I use my health insurance towards your services?

Some health insurance policies can contribute towards the cost of specialist services, including Clinical Psychology. Please check your specific policy wording ahead of any booked sessions to avoid any surprises. 

How many sessions will I need?

This is entirely dependent on your particular situation. While some difficulties may only require a few sessions to address, other difficulties may require more time. After your initial assessment, you will be provided with a proposed plan that outlines what other services (if any) will be of benefit to you based on your needs.

Can we just get straight into treatment without going through the assessment process?

No. The assessment process provides the information required to design a treatment plan that is specifically tailored to address each young person’s unique needs. Without an assessment, Verena would be reliant on a one-size-fits-all approach, which she believes would be a disservice to young people. A thorough assessment represents the very first step towards living a more adaptive, meaningful and fulfilling life. 

How can I prepare my child/adolescent before they come to see you? 

Each child/adolescent is different and so too are the dynamics between children/adolescents and their parents/caregivers. In saying that, Verena considers that in general, the best way to prepare most children/adolescents is to have an honest conversation with them about the challenges that they are experiencing and let them know that you will be visiting someone who can help them with these. Most children/adolescents will have insight into their struggles and it can be helpful for them to discuss their perspectives/concerns with you if that is what they wish to do. The important thing is to ensure that you validate their experiences and talk to them in a manner that is appropriate for their age (e.g. keep the discussion really simple for younger children).

Contact Lotus and Fern

Thinking about seeing a Psychologist can naturally bring up many questions. Verena offers a personalised service that is respectfully tailored to support your unique needs and goals. Request a complimentary 10-minute phone consultation so that you can get an initial feel of her service, ask any questions you have and use that information to make an informed decision for your family.

Phone: 027 568 8733

Consulting Offices

Albany: 233 Dairy Flat Highway.
Browns Bay: Browns Bay Medical Centre, 13-15 Bute Road.

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