What do you charge?
The cost per hourly session is £50 for individuals during weekdays and £60 on Saturday mornings.
Will my Private Health Care cover the cost?
I am a registered practitioner with AXA PPP Healthcare, Aviva, Vitality Health and Aetna Global Benefits private healthcare groups. If you are insured with one of these providers, they may be able to cover the cost of your sessions.
You will need to check that your policy includes counselling and/or psychotherapy, and confirm with your insurer how many sessions will be covered, and whether or not you’ll need a referral from your GP. If your provider agrees to cover the cost of therapy please give me your policy number and authorisation code when booking your first appointment. I will then liaise with your insurers to obtain coverage for further appointments, send invoices and track payments.
How often do I need to attend?
Most people come to counselling on a weekly basis. However some come more often and some less frequently. This is something we can discuss as with all our work together I try to centre what is offered around you as the client. The frequency of sessions may also vary over the course of our work together. We will undertake regular reviews and talk about the best way to proceed.
Where are you based?
I’m based in Ruislip, West London, HA4 0SB. There’s free parking available and it is easy to reach me via train, underground (South Ruislip) or bus (114).
What times do you have appointments available?
I work Monday to Friday during the daytime and evenings and on Saturday morning. My earliest appointment is 8am, the latest 8pm dependent on the day.
How do I make an appointment?
To make an appointment you are welcome to email, ring, text or Whatsapp me. I usually suggest a phone call to arrange the actual time for our first session as this simplifies the process. More importantly it will give you a chance to get to know a little more about how I work and ask any questions you have. If you prefer to make you appointment over text or online that is also absolutely fine. If you would like to book an appointment directly you can do this through my Welldoing entry: https://welldoing.org/counsellors/marie-fernandes-integrative-counsellor-ha4
What can I expect in my first session?
Nearly everyone feels nervous or worried when they come to their first session. My role is to help you feel relaxed and able to speak openly. At the start of the session I will ask if you have any questions and I find out what brought you to therapy. It is up to me to help you to feel comfortable, there is no obligation on your part at all.
I’ll listen and ask questions to clarify or explore what you are bringing. Sometimes I will offer some information to help you to understand what is going on from a neurological or psychological viewpoint. I believe change is easier and more manageable if we first understand ourselves. I’m here to stand with you and accompany you on your journey. I often say to clients I am here for you and on your side. Counselling is time for you.
Do I need to have a specific problem or issue to come to counselling?
No. Counselling is the ultimate in self care; it enables us to understand ourselves, situations, experiences and relationships. Some clients come with specific issues or problems but often we don’t understand the reasons they feel unhappy or are struggling in life. As the therapist I am the trained professional and my role is to help.
How do I find out whether you are properly qualified?
The simplest way is to check with the British Association of Counsellor and Psychotherapists (BACP). They’re the UK’s largest professional organisation for therapists and hold a register of verified qualified and accredited counsellors. Their website is: www.bacp.co.uk.
Is Online therapy different from face to face sessions?
Online therapy is the exact same process as in-person counselling or psychotherapy. It’s just that instead of talking in the same room, we will meet online.
What about confidentiality online?
According to the UK’s Information Commissioner’s Office Skype can be used for online therapy provided clients give ther consent. All Skype-to-Skype voice, video, file transfers and instant messages are encrypted. This protects you from potential eavesdropping by malicious users.
What if I miss or have to cancel a session?
Sessions that are missed or cancelled with less than 24 hours notice are chargeable in full unless there are extenuating circumstances