Practice – FAQ
Do I need a referral from the general practitioner (GP)?
Not necessarily. However, your general practitioner will receive a report if he referred you to psychotherapy and you have given your consent. Your general practitioner will then be given information regarding your overall health and medication.
However, without your consent, no report will be generated. Confidentiality is guaranteed at all times.
I’ve done psychotherapy before. Is this a problem?
If two years have passed since the last therapy, a new therapy can be requested.
If you need support within the two-year period, I encourage you to speak openly with the therapist. In such cases, the health insurance initially requires a psychological assessment.
Can I still change therapists after completion of the probatory sessions?
The already approved sessions are personal and not transferable to another psychotherapist.
For example, if 25 sessions have been approved and you would like to change psychotherapists after the 15th session, you will not be able to automatically allocate the remaining 10 hours to another psychotherapist.
The new therapist is required to submit a new claim for reimbursement, which is often approved by the health insurance.
When is out-patient psychotherapy unsuitable?
Out-patient psychotherapy requires a certain physical and mental stability of the patient.
In some cases, another form of treatment may be useful or necessary before outpatient psychotherapy can be effective. For example, outpatient addiction therapy for alcohol-dependent patients is only performed in the abstinent “dry” state. Previously, a stationary detoxification and weaning must have taken place. Patients in suicidal crises are first stabilized and supported by psychiatric medical clinic prior to commencing with outpatient psychotherapy.
When is in-patient therapy advisable?
Sometimes out-patient psychotherapy no longer suffices for recovery. In-patient treatment is indicated when there is a risk of self harm or harm of others, or if the severity of the illness requires intensive psychiatric attention. The following list summarizes the indications for in-patient treatment:
- In case of self harm or harm to others
- If there is a serious mental disorder
- If the treatment requires a multimodal treatment approach
- If the outpatient therapy is insufficient: lack of improvement or deterioration tendencies
- If there are physical concomitant diseases that require daily medical checks (complex clinical picture)
- In exceptional stressful circumstances in the family or at work – the patient has to get out of the conflict
What role do drugs play in therapy?
Medication (psychotropic substances) that affect the central nervous system have the ability to regulate an imbalance in the brain – thus temporarily reducing mental symptoms, such as depression, anxiety and tension states. The patient has the opportunity to commit themselves fully to the therapeutic process with minor complaints.
In some cases, the combination of pharmacotherapy and psychotherapy (combination therapy) is the prioritized method in achieving optimal treatment outcomes.
Contrary to some fears, most psychotropic substances are neither addictive nor do they alter the personality. Rather, psychotropic substances compensate an existing imbalance (a lack or an abundance of messenger substances in the brain), so that stability and a higher responsiveness to psychotherapy are given.
Like all effective medicines, psychotropic substances can cause side effects. If the medication is supervised appropriately, side effects can be reduced accordingly.
How do I know if this is the right therapist for me?
The therapy will be successful if the relationship is characterized by commitment, trust and respect. The consultation hours as well as probatory sessions serve to develop a rapport. Here you can reflect upon your ability to engage in the therapy, the recommended method and professional qualification and the person of the therapist.
We recommend your full commitment during the therapy as this increases your success.
How long does psychotherapy take?
Up to three consultation hours followed by up to four probationary sessions may be taken before the authorization-required psychotherapy begins.
Short term therapy (KZT1 and KZT2) includes 12 sessions each and lasts about six months at a weekly frequency. In the event that the process has not been completed or more sessions are required, a total of 60 sessions (long-term treatment LZT) can be requested. This long-term therapy covers approximately a period of 18 months.
What do I do if I cannot make an appointment?
If you are unable to attend an appointment, please notify 24 hours or one or two business days in advance, as agreed with your therapist. In the event that you cancel at short notice, I am obliged to bill you for the cancellation fee previously agreed upon.
Will psychotherapy be paid for by my health insurance?
I have an accreditation for behavioral therapy (VT) allowing my practice to work with all German health insurances.
If you are a member of a statutory health insurance, we will bill you through your health insurance card.
If you are a member of a private health insurance, we charge you the costs of psychotherapy according to the fee schedule for doctors (GOÄ). As a private insured person, please clarify the modalities prior to the commencement of treatment with regard to whether and to what extent an outpatient psychotherapy is included in the benefits catalog of your insurance contract.
Your health insurance will reimburse you for the costs according to the terms of your health insurance contract. Your private insurance company will provide you with all the documents required for the approval process.
Please note that the costs for services from the section “Professional Services” are not covered by the health insurance companies. The costs for these services is the responsibility of the client.
Please contact me if you would like a cost overview of these services.
What is the difference between a psychotherapist, a psychological psychotherapist, a psychologist and a psychiatrist?
There are different therapists who have been granted permission to treat people with mental disorders and suffering, they have been trained accordingly and have a practice of psychotherapy.
The information is an excerpt from Information acquired from Wikipedia.
… are specialists in psychiatry and psychotherapy. Psychotherapy has been included as mandatory since 1994 in the specialist training of psychiatrists. The specialist in psychiatry and psychotherapy should be differentiated from the other two psychotherapeutic specialists, the specialist in psychosomatic medicine and psychotherapy and the specialist in child and adolescent psychiatry and psychotherapy.
… is a psychologist, doctor or (social) pedagogue who, in addition to his studies, is licensed to practice medicine (license to practice medicine) and practice psychotherapy in the sense of the Psychotherapists Act and the Psychotherapeutic Guidelines. This includes the diagnosis and treatment of mental illness using scientifically recognized methods of psychotherapy. If psychologists complete their training in the sense of the psychotherapist law, they may call themselves psychological psychotherapists.
… is a person who has successfully completed a psychology degree with a Diploma or Masters degree in pychology. Psychologists can then specialize to become a psychotherapist, but also be active in many other occupational fields, such as in the economy, in human resources, in research, as a traffic psychologist and in counseling centers. A psychologist can practice may have their own psychological practice, however, must refrain from referring to themselves as a psychotherapist. Only after completing a multi-year specialization according to the requirements of the Psychotherapists Act, may they then refer to themselves as a psychological psychotherapist.
Psychotherapy with a license according to the Non-Medical Practitioners Act…
… describes a special feature of the German health care system. Non-medical practitioners in Germany are authorized to practice psychotherapy in addition to psychological and medical psychotherapists as well as child and adolescent psychotherapists. Since 1993, psychotherapy can also be exercised by persons who have been granted a “license for the professional practice of medicine without license as a non-medical practitioner limited to the field of psychotherapy” (alternative practitioner for psychotherapy).