There is no shortage of psychologists, therapists and even non-regulated paraprofessionals calling themselves “counsellors”. Most are located in the city and offer a standard fifty minute appointment, generally between the office hours of nine and five. It may take several weeks before you can get an appointment and when you do, you’ve likely already had to take time off of work, pull the kids out of school, travel a lengthy distance, navigate the city, dish out money for parking, pay out-of-pocket for your session and then sit in a stuffy office with a clinician dressed in intimidating business attire and try and tell your story. By the time you just start to feel comfortable and safe enough to tell your story, you’ll likely be told that your fifty minutes is up. You’re going to have to do this again. And again. And perhaps even again.
Both Dean and Carla know through their own lived experience with complex medical needs that it’s not only exceptionally hard work to manage and keep abreast of ones care, but requires more time, more commitment and more expense to access specialized services when you live remotely. They’ve come to see that patients like themselves not only appreciate efficient, well coordinated and personalized care when they need it and where they need it, but also care outcomes that immediate begin to remedy the concern that originally brought them in. It’s those exact experiences that drew Dean and Carla towards designing their clinical model back in 2014 when Summit Psychology first evolved.
It won’t take you long to see that that at Summit Psychology, we do things different – we do things The Rural Way. And we like it that way. We refer to the rural way as our nine niches; the nine things that set us apart from the more traditional clinicians and larger counselling centres that Carla describes above.
|1||First, we want you to know that you are our priority. Your health matters. Getting to know you and developing a warm, caring relationship with all of our patients is pretty darn important to both Dean and Carla, and our pet therapy dogs Finch and Fern.|
|2||Second, your confidentiality is of utmost importance to us. You don’t have to worry that others will know that you’re receiving care through Summit Psychology, unless of course, you choose to tell them.|
|3||Third, because delivering personalized and well-coordinated care is a critical priority to both Dean and Carla, you don’t have to worry about dealing with some randomly hired administrative assistant. It’ll be us that you talk to on the phone, through text messaging, or via email. And the best part – we’ll even pick up the phone when you call.|
|4||Fourth, Carla offers sessions at a length that is specific to what you need. If those quick, fifty minute sessions feel rushed and not as productive as you need them to be, pick from an appointment that is 1.5 hours, 2 hours, 2.5 hours or even 3 hours. That’s like doing two or three sessions all at once. If you want results and you want them fast, this option is for you!|
|5||Fifth, if coming to see Carla doesn’t work for you, let her come and see you. Sessions can be done at your home, your place of work, or at a facility you’re receiving care in.|
|6||Sixth, it’s important to both Dean and Carla that you feel relaxed and comfortable throughout the booking and consultation process. This is why you’ll see Carla dressed very casually, either in one of her comfiest pairs of blue jeans or perhaps a flowy boho dress and some some flip-flop sandals.|
|7||Seventh, let Carla work around your schedule. It’s very important to Dean and Carla that their patient’s get care when they need it, which is why they offer new patients a 24 hour appointment guarantee, and the option of urgent consultations for their regular patients. While Carla does maintain regular daytime hours, she also offers plenty of availability for early morning, evening, weekend and even holiday consultations.|
|8||Eighth, we believe in the importance of integrated patient care. More simply, that left hand talks to the right hand. It might be having a spouse come in and learn about the strategies a patient has been working on, so that he or she can better support their loved one, or liaising with your primary care physician or pharmacist about any concerns and/or the relaying the progress you’ve been making. This, of course, would never be done without your consent first.|
|9||And lastly, Carla shares with you over twenty years of counselling experience! Let’s face it, if you’ve finally reached a point in your life where you ready to change or to talk about something you’ve never been to talk about with anyone before, you don’t want a clinician thats working on their practicum hours or is fresh out of college; you want someone with both extensive clinical and life experience. And that Carla has.|