Here are answers to the most common questions. Please call us at 1-888-245-5516 if you have a different question or need more information.
What is a Therapist?
A therapist is an individual who has a combination of educational credentials and professional qualifications, and who is skilled in delivering treatment intended to resolve mental health and/or psychological challenges.
Dalton Associates’ therapists have a wide range of educational and professional backgrounds, with diverse specialties, making it easier for people to find a therapist who can meet their unique needs.
Some of the common types of therapists include:
Registered Psychologists: Psychologists conduct formalized assessments and therapy for people of diverse ages and mental health needs. They can also provide a diagnosis for mental health and psychological issues. The College of Psychologists of Ontario (CPO) requires that Psychologists have completed a doctoral level degree in psychology, a one-year internship, an additional year of formal supervised practice (approved by the CPO), and three CPO examinations.
Registered Psychological Associates: Psychological Associates, like Psychologists, conduct formalized assessments and therapy for people of diverse ages and mental health needs. They can also provide a diagnosis for mental health and psychological issues. The College of Psychologists of Ontario (CPO) require that Psychological Associates have completed a masters level degree in psychology, four years of experience working in the practice of psychology, an additional year of formal supervised practice (approved by the CPO), and three CPO examinations. There is no distinction made in the legislation or in the regulations between Psychologists and Psychological Associates with respect to scope of practice or with respect to controlled/authorized acts.
Registered Psychotherapists: “Psychotherapist” is an umbrella term for any professional who is trained to treat people experiencing mental health challenges. In Ontario, the College of Registered Psychotherapists of Ontario (CRPO) governs and regulates the practice of psychotherapy as a regulated health profession, setting standards and regulations that all Psychotherapists must comply with in order to practice.
Registered Social Workers: Social Workers are professionals who work with people of all ages experiencing a variety of challenges that affect everyday lives, including mental health issues. Social Workers provide counselling, offer tools and resources, and help people navigate the services they require. In Ontario, Social Workers typically have degrees at the masters level, and are registered with the Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers (OCSWSSW).
Registered Marriage and Family Therapists: Registered Marriage and Family Therapists (RMFTs) are family/couple-focused therapists with a qualified degree at the masters level. They have also undergone a specified number of hours of supervised clinical practice. They are relationship specialists and mental health generalists. They are trained to help individuals, couples, and families resolve personal and work related problems.
Counsellors: Like “Psychotherapist”, “Counsellor” is an umbrella term for any professional who is trained to provide support and guidance on personal, social, or psychological challenges.
How do I make an appointment?
Once you have browsed through our Find A Therapist directory, please feel free to contact our Client Services Team who are happy to assist you with selecting a therapist who will meet your unique needs.
Call us toll-free at 1-855-259-9348. Our Client Services Team will answer your questions and have a brief discussion about your concerns or the area of service you may require. To register you as a client, we will need some personal information (e.g. name, address, phone number, and insurance information). Dr. Dalton will approve your therapist selection, or recommend another therapist based upon competency and availability.
Your assigned therapist will contact you within 24-48 hours after you register to schedule your initial appointment. Your concerns are important to us. We will strive to provide prompt and effective service. Most appointments occur within a week of your first contact with the therapist.
What if I don't know what kind of help I need?
We understand that mental health challenges can often overlap, and it may be difficult to determine exactly who you need to see and what the main concerns are. Our Client Services Team are experienced listeners who will ask and answer questions to help determine which of our services would best suit your needs.
Who should you see? Our team is made up of Registered Psychologists, Registered Psychological Associates, Registered Social Workers, Clinical Counsellors, Therapists and Psychology Interns. Based on your needs, we will help make an appropriate match.
How quickly can I see a therapist?
Your therapist will contact you within 24-48 hours after you register with Dalton Associates to schedule your initial appointment. There is no waiting list and most appointments occur within one week of your first contact with the therapist.
Are my sessions confidential?
We respect your right to privacy and confidentiality. Information will not be communicated, directly or indirectly, to a third party without your informed and written consent.
We have legal and ethical obligations, which may limit your right to privacy and confidentiality. These obligations include:
- informing the Children’s Aid Society if there is a suspicion of a child being at risk or in need of protection due to neglect, or physical, sexual, or emotional abuse
- releasing a client’s file if court ordered to do so
- informing an appropriate family member, health care professional, or police if necessary of a client’s intention to end his or her own life
- informing a potential victim of violence of a client’s intention to harm
- reporting a regulated health practitioner who has had a sexual relationship with a client
- providing access to the clinical records to the College of Psychologists of Ontario when legally required to do so.
What can I expect at my first therapy appointment?
Your safety and confidence is of primary importance to us at Dalton Associates. Most first appointments are one hour in length. Your therapist will introduce him/herself to you, and provide you with an overview of their experience and credentials.
During your first therapy appointment, you will be asked to review and sign a Consent to Services Agreement, which should answer most of the questions you may have about the process. You can expect to discuss your presenting problem or concern, and the gathering of relevant historical and medical information. Your therapist will discuss with you a plan for service, which may include: goals, expectations, frequency of visits, and the expected duration of treatment.
Why should I seek therapy?
Mental health challenges are common and seeking help to prevent or overcome them is a sign of courage, strength, and health. Many individuals experience difficulties after marriage breakdown, job layoff, mid-life crisis, an accident or serious disease, the death of a close relative or friend, a business failure, and so on. Emotional and behavioral problems affect individuals from all walks of life, at all income levels, and at all ages. Services provided by mental health professionals are an integral part of one’s complete health care.
What are the fees and method of payment for your services?
Fees will be determined based on the time and nature of the service provided, plus the training and experience of the therapist. All fees follow the guidelines set by the Ontario Psychological Association for psychological consultation and counselling. Some therapists are open to discuss fee reduction arrangements, and most therapists are open to adjusting treatment schedules to accommodate financial means. Your fee will be discussed with you during the intake interview and you will be advised beforehand if any changes are made to the agreed-upon fee. All efforts are made to provide affordable psychological services.
Although OHIP does not cover psychological services, most extended health insurance plans do provide psychological coverage. In this case, the client submits their invoice to their insurance provider after each session, and is reimbursed. Please visit our Fees & Insurance page for more information.
For therapy clients who need individual, couple or family counselling, the fees are set and agreed upon at the initial interview and paid for by the client at the end of each session.
Motor Vehicle Accident (MVA) Therapy
If you were psychologically injured as a result of a motor vehicle accident, then your fees, if approved, will be covered and paid directly by your auto insurance carrier.
Workers Safety Insurance Board (WSIB)
If you were psychologically injured as a result of a workplace injury then, if approved, your fees will be covered and paid directly by the Workplace Safety Insurance Board (WSIB).
Short and Long Term Disability
If you are unable to perform your work duties due to a psychological condition, and are eligible for short or long term disability, then your disability insurance provider may cover your therapy sessions. Many insurance providers will expect the client to pay for the therapy sessions up front, and be reimbursed after a receipt for service is submitted.
Will my extended health insurance plan cover your psychological services?
Our services are covered by most extended health insurance plans (e.g., Blue Cross, etc.) and some Employee Assistance Plans (EAPs). Psychological services are not covered by OHIP (Ontario Health Insurance Plan).
Extended health insurance plans can differ. We encourage you to check your insurance plan regarding coverage and claim procedures.
Is counselling for one person only, or can my whole family come in together?
Dalton Associates provides individual, couple, and family therapy. Often, when one member of a family is struggling, everyone is affected. Wherever possible we encourage the family to meet together and help develop solutions and strategies that will work for the entire family.
Do I need a referral from a physician?
Our services do not require a referral from a physician. However, a referral for service may be required by your insurance provider, if you are claiming the service under an extended health insurance plan. Health insurance plans differ, so we encourage you to check with your insurance provider regarding regarding coverage and claim procedures prior to your first appointment. If a referral is needed by your physician, it need only state, “I refer [Your Name] for psychological consultation or assessment”.
What is the difference between a psychologist and a psychiatrist?
A psychiatrist is a medical doctor who can prescribe medication. A psychologist, on the other hand, assists people with a range of mental health concerns and challenge by conducting psychological assessment, diagnosis, and psychotherapy or counselling. Although psychiatrists can diagnose and offer psychotherapy, psychologists typically receive more extensive training in psychological assessment and treatment.
A psychologist obtains graduate training in psychology and pursues either a Ph.D. (Doctor of Philosophy) or Psy.D. (Doctor of Psychology) in clinical or counselling psychology. He/she is called a “doctor,” but not a medical doctor (M.D.). Doctorate programs typically take five (5) to seven (7) years to complete, which includes a one-year internship. Psychiatrists attend medical school and complete an additional four years of residency training in mental health after completing their M.D.
Dalton Associates is a psychological practice, and we do not offer the services of a psychiatrist.
Where is the therapist located?
Dalton Associates has 200+ mental health professionals located throughout south and central Ontario. Currently we serve 50+ cities and towns in Ontario. Our distance counselling service is available for clients who do not live in a city or town that is serviced by a therapist. Please visit our Find A Therapist page for a full list of our locations, and to find a therapist in your home community.
Will I be in safe hands?
At Dalton Associates, we are a diverse and well-trained community of mental health professionals. As such, we both respect and honour the communities we serve. As mental health professionals, we come from a variety of backgrounds and life experiences, and differ as much in terms of our professional training and interests, ethnicity and orientations, as those who access our services. It is our mission to provide a safe and supportive environment in which every individual feels not only comfortable, but respected. We acknowledge your privacy and take the utmost care in protecting that privacy in all aspects of our services.
We welcome your requests to match you with a mental health professional that may have unique experience in the issues you would like to address. Inclusive of age, ethnicity, gender and sexual orientation, our aim is to provide our clients with a compassionate and professional alliance.
How do I choose the right therapist?
Connecting you with the right therapist is very important to ensure the therapy is effective in addressing your challenges and concerns. Dalton Associates has developed a Find A Therapist page to help you find a therapist who meets your unique needs. Please visit our Find A Therapy page to find a mental health professional in your home community, who has experience supporting individuals with similar challenges. Or, call our Client Services Team at 1-855-259-9348 for support in finding the right match for you.