Valerie O Neill
Counsellor & Psychotherapist
Do I need to be referred from my GP?
You do not need to be referred from your GP. You can make an appointment with me directly. GP’s often will refer patients through for counselling however this is not a requirement.
How many counselling sessions will I need?
This varies depending on each individuals circumstances. Some people come for crisis therapy while others need long term therapy. This will depend on the difficulties you are experiencing and your needs from counselling. Normally it takes three sessions to get to know each other at which time we can make a plan for going forward.
How often will we meet?
Normally sessions are held on the same day and time each week. Every effort will be made to facilitate appointments when in crisis.
What happens if I need to cancel a session?
Time has been specifically reserved for your appointment. Please be advised that a cancellation period of at least 48 hours is required. If you fail to attend a scheduled appointment and are unable to give 48 hours notice, the session fee will be charged. This fee may be waived in the case of genuine emergency.
Appointments cancelled with at least 72 hours notice can be rescheduled at no additional charge.
What happens if I am Late?
The time we agreed is your appointment slot and if you are late the session will finish at the scheduled time.
Will my health insurance or medical card cover the costs?
As yet counselling & psychotherapy services are not covered by the major health insurance providers in Ireland. To be certain, please check your mental health benefits or contact your insurer to verify if they cover the type of counselling you are seeking. At present psychotherapy is not covered by your medical card.
What are the office hours?
I offer some evening and weekend appointments in addition to normal business hours. Sessions are by appointment only.
What can I expect to pay?
My current fee is €50 during normal working hours. I review my fees in January.
A limited number of concessionary places are available at a reduced fee.
How confidential is the service?
Confidentiality is maintained in line the ethical and practice guidelines of the Irish Association of Humanistic and Integrative Psychotherapy (IAHIP).
What is the difference between Psychotherapy and Psychiatry?
Very simply Psychiatrists are specialised medical doctors in the area of mental health and psychiatric illness. Practitioners of Psychiatry possess a medical degree and specialise in the diagnosis of mental illness and prescription of psychiatric medication such as anti-depressants. They follow the DSM (The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders) and generally treat moderate to severe mental illness. Psychotherapists do not prescribe medication unless they are medical doctors. They do however often liaise with G.P’s and Psychiatrists. What Psychotherapists specialise in is listening and enabling the client to talk as freely and as openly as possible about any issues or questions they may have. Psychotherapists do not diagnose people.