Frequently Asked Questions
Who are our services for?
We provide services for adults, older adults, and partners in care who have a wide range of emotional, physical, or cognitive concerns from injuries, age-related complications, and more.
Do you offer free consultations?
Yes! Our clinicians are happy to connect with you over the phone for a free 10-minute consultation to discuss your needs and goals, as well as the next steps in your journey towards Balance.
How can I connect with one of your clinicians?
There are two ways to meet with a member of our team. First, by using our Self-Referral Form on this website and selecting the clinician you would like to meet with. Or, by calling our clinic and leaving a voicemail with your contact information (403-762-0771). Referrals will be contacted by phone within 24-48 hours. Your needs and goals will be briefly discussed to ensure that our services are a good fit. A referral from a physician or another professional is not necessary to make an appointment.
Do you accept insurance or private medical coverage?
We offer direct billing to a growing list of major insurers. However, not all of our clinicians can directly bill the same insurance providers. Please refer to our fees and billing policies page for more information, or contact us to answer any questions.
Can I use my insurance provider while I am on a disability claim?
The types of services that you are eligible for under a disability claim are typically under the discretion of a case manager, rehabilitation coordinator, or return-to-work specialist. Often, your insurer will rely on medical documentation to make such decisions. You are encouraged to inquire about additional supports directly with whomever manages your file. If approved, your insurer will set-up a direct contract with our clinic to provide the requested service. Insurance referrals for service must come directly from your insurance provider. This helps ensure that direct billing is in place before your initial visit. Sessions that occur prior to the contract being set will not be covered by the contract. Third party referrals typically require reports and ongoing communication about your file. You will be asked to consent to release this information.
My lawyer said that I should “see someone” for help.
Payment for services following an injury or motor vehicle accident can vary greatly. You are encouraged to discuss these details with your attorney. We can only direct bill third party payors (e.g. lawyers, disability insurance providers) once we have a contract in place with the third party. We will require your written and signed consent to communicate with any third party.
What is a Registered Provisional Psychologist?
In Alberta, a person can be a psychologist with either a masters or doctoral degree in a mental health field, such as psychology. Education and training typically involves 6 to 10 years of university study of how people think, feel and behave. The College of Alberta Psychologists (CAP) regulates the practice of psychologists in Alberta. Once a person meets the graduate coursework and degree requirements set forth by CAP, they are able to apply for registered provisional status. Both psychologists and registered provisional psychologists do similar work, but provisional psychologists must be under supervision for 1600 hours worth of work, while a fully registered psychologist can practice independently. Provisional psychologists must also pass two exams in order to be registered. Most people practice as provisional psychologists for at least one year before applying to be fully registered. Provisional psychologists with a doctorate degree who have completed over 1600 hours as part of their internship/residency training typically apply for full registration sooner than this.
What is a Clinical Neuropsychologist?
In Alberta, when a person registers to be a psychologist, they must also declare their area of practice, or specialization, based on their coursework and clinical training. One such specialization is neuropsychology. According to the College of Alberta Psychologists (CAP), the neuropsychology branch includes “the application of psychological knowledge, skills and judgment about brain-behaviour relationships to the assessment, diagnosis and treatment of individuals with known or suspected central nervous system dysfunction.” Psychologists who practice in the area of neuropsychology have specialized training to understand how illnesses, injuries, and diseases of the brain and central nervous system affect the way a person thinks, feels, and behaves.
What is a Rehabilitation Psychologist?
Psychologists who practice in the area of rehabilitation psychology have specialized training in assisting people with disabilities and chronic medical/health conditions to improve their quality of life and overcome various challenges. According to the College of Alberta Psychologists, the rehabilitation branch includes “the application of psychological knowledge, skills and judgment to the assessment and treatment of individuals with impairments in their physical, emotional, cognitive, social, or occupational abilities in order to promote maximum functioning and minimize disability.”
What is the difference between a psychologist and a psychiatrist?
Psychiatrists are medical doctors who go on to specialize in mental health and related disorders. They have the ability to prescribe medications to manage mental health concerns, which can be especially beneficial in treating some disorders. Like psychologists, some psychiatrists also provide psychotherapy. Psychologists often work in close collaboration with psychiatrists to ensure that clients are receiving the best possible treatment for their condition.
Does your practice offer evening or weekend appointments?
Appointment availability is individually determined by each clinician and may include evening flexibility. You are encouraged to discuss appointment options when you are connected with your clinician.
Personal information gathered during the provision of services at Balance: Psychology and Brain Health LTD., is kept confidential, and in accordance with the Personal Information Protection Act, and Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act. Personal information includes identifying information about an individual, such as their address of residence, birthdate, phone number, or email address. It can also include other identifying details, such as physical or mental health problems, information about health services received, as well as identifying details specific to an individual’s activities (work, recreation, relationships). Professional practice of each clinician is also governed by their specific regulatory body.
Client information cannot be shared with another party without informed and written consent of the client or the client’s legal guardian. Psychologists, in particular, have a legal and ethical obligation to protect your privacy, and to comply with provincial and federal privacy legislation in the collection and retention of your personal information. Personal information is kept only for as long as it is needed or required by law (11 years, or longer; see Alberta Limitations Act).
Our online practice management software, Jane, is compliant with provincial and national laws governing the security of Personal Health Information, meaning your information is kept secure and private. More information can be found directly on Jane’s security FAQ and Alberta privacy compliance guide.
To protect your privacy during correspondence or the transfer of personal information, communication via a confidential phone line (403) 764 – 0771 and/or fax line (403) 764 – 0072, is always preferred for security purposes. Emails are treated confidential once received, but full privacy cannot be guaranteed for information in “cyber space.”
Please note: Upon responding to phone calls, our clinic will not leave a voice message in the event that you are unavailable, without your consent. If you would us to leave you a voice message, please provide consent to do so in your original voice message or self-referral form.
Despite best efforts to protect your privacy, there are some legal exceptions to client confidentiality: Personal information may be shared with persons who are not related to your care (e.g., police) if, and not limited to: (1) your statements or behaviour suggest that you are likely to harm yourself or someone else; (2) there is suspected potential abuse or neglect of a child/children or a dependent adult receiving publicly funded care or support services; or (3) information is subpoenaed by a court of law.
How is my privacy protected?
Our clinic puts privacy and confidentiality at the forefront of client care at Balance. Personal information gathered during the provision of services is kept confidential, and in accordance with the Personal Information Protection Act, and Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act. Our online practice management software, Jane, is compliant with provincial and national laws governing security of Personal Health Information, meaning your information is kept secure and private. More information can be found directly on Jane’s website.
The actions and professional practice of each clinician is governed by their specific regulatory body. Guidelines for protecting your confidentiality will be discussed with you during the consent process at your first session. Only with your consent, may we then share your information with a third party.
I need mental health services, but I am unable to afford the fees.
All Albertans have mental health coverage through Alberta Health Services. To access this coverage, you can call Health Link (811) and ask for a referral to a mental health specialist. While there are provincially established fee recommendations for each province, depending on the clinician’s area of practice, pricing is ultimately under the discretion of each clinician. Some clinicians are able to provide support on a sliding scale, based on your income, while other clinicians determine pricing based on their qualifications and specialized nature of the service.
What are some other mental health resources that I can access?
Calgary Distress Centre
Canadian Association for Suicide Prevention
Calgary Counselling Centre
Canadian Mental Health Association – Calgary
Access Mental Health: For non-urgent services and assistance navigating options for addictions and mental health services.
211 Alberta: Provides information regarding various resources, including mental health and addictions services. https://ab.211.ca/
Canadian Association for Suicide Prevention