Contact and Appointment Information My practice is currently located at the Mastering Pain Institute at Evergreen Behavioral Health, in Vancouver WA.
To schedule an appointment, please call 360.450.0140 to speak with our patient services staff. They will help you with what you need to bring and know for your initial appointment at Evergreen Behavioral Health. If you would like to leave a confidential voice mail message for me you may do so at 360.450.0140, extension 710 or you may use my same email address: firstname.lastname@example.org. The fax number is 877.343.0535.
When contacting me directly, please remember to leave me your contact information and let me know if I can leave a message for you on your voicemail or email just in case I miss you when I return your call or email. Please note my telephone number is blocked to protect your privacy.
Appointment times are generally available between 9:30am and 5:30pm Monday through Friday at Evergreen Behavioral Health in Vancouver, WA. Appointments are usually made within one week. Routine follow-up or maintenance appointments are usually made within two weeks.
If you believe you need immediate assistance, please call 911, call the national crisis line at 1.800.784.2433 or your local county crisis line, or go to your local emergency room.
Evergreen Behavioral Health is located in the Salmon Creek area of Vancouver, WA at 2621 NE 134th Street, Suite 340, Vancouver WA 98686. The building is fully accessible and ADA compliant.
For further information about the Mastering Pain Method please visit that website at www.masteringpainmethod.com.
Evergreen Behavioral Health, 2621 NE 134th Street, Suite 340, Vancouver WA 98686
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQS)
Q: Who will answer my telephone call or email message? A: At Evergreen Behavioral Health, your calls will be answered by our patient services staff who are knowledgeable, warm, and happy to help you however they can. I will personally respond to all telephone calls and emails that come to me directly as soon as I am able to do so.
Q: What can I expect at my first actual appointment? A: At uour first appointment you may complete some forms you have either downloaded from the Evergreen Behavioral Health website or received from the office staff when you check in. When we meet, we will discuss your reasons for coming in, I will answer any questions you might have, and if it seems like a good fit we will discuss our next steps.
Q. How long are all subsequent sessions? A. Most sessions (other than the assessment session) will be 38 to 52 minutes long and are generally scheduled for 45 minutes. Occasionally 53 to 60 minute sessions will be offered if appropriate, but you if you are using insurance, you will want to be sure that they will cover an appointment of that length. How often an individual attends sessions will vary from person to person. Most patients attend sessions on a weekly basis early in treatment then progress to twice a month then to once a month. Occasionally, usually due to financial hardship, health, or transportation issues, some will attend once or twice a month.
Q. How long will I need to see you? A. The length of your treatment will depend on a number of factors unique to you, including the issues you are wanting to address and how long they have been interfering in your life. In general, the majority of people are noticeably improved after 12-20 sessions. Some patients report feeling better after only a few sessions while others may require 40 or more sessions. Some patients improve noticeably, but do not reach their full improvement goals for some time. As you progress you may find that you need to come in less and less frequently unless you are having neurofeedback training. Many people come in once monthly towards the end of their treatment. And still other people, although much improved, elect to come in for maintenance sessions and supportive work as needed.
Q. Do you take insurance? A. I do take insurance, but not all insurance plans will cover me. Insurance has become quite complicated with plans being administered by other insurers and sometimes under the umbrella of a third insurer. There are many different insurance companies with many different insurance products. I regret I cannot tell you exactly what your plan will cover. Please remember that your insurance coverage is the result of a contract between you and your insurance company. You will want to know if you have a co-pay or co-insurance, if you have, or have met any deductible, and if you will need preauthorization for any service. You may also consider "out of network" benefits if you have them if I am not covered directly by your insurance. When you come to your first appointment at Evergreen Behavioral Health you will complete an insurance verification form which will help you through that process. It will be especially important if you will be having physiological monitoring or biofeedback services or completeing assessment measures. We do want to help you avoid any unexpected bills. Our patient services staff can assist you with understanding any part of that process that isn't clear to you from the form.
Q. How much does it cost? A. Your fee varies depending on the type of appointment you schedule. You can find a fee schedule in the Disclosure of Clinic Policies and Procedures and Informed Consent for Treatment form at evergreenbehavioralhealth.com, or you may request this information from our patient services staff at our front desk. I generally see a few people for very low or no fee and at this time am reserving those slots for ongoing patients with financial hardship issues.
Q. Will you keep information about me and my treatment confidential? A. Your confidentiality is protected by state law, by the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) and by the American Psychological Association's (APA) Code of Ethics. In general, all information about you is held confidential and is released only through procedures consistent with state laws, HIPAA, and the APA's Code of Ethics. There are certain exceptions to confidentiality. These are described in the Notice of Privacy Practices document you will receive prior to beginning treatment.
Q. I'm not happy with my medications. Can you help me change my medicine? A. I am licensed and trained to practice psychology and board certified to provide biofeedback but prescribing medications would be outside the scope of my practice. I do often consult with physicians who prescribe medications and am happy to work with them to help you with any medication management concerns you might have. If you will be working with biofeedback, it is important to note that certain medications will translate into changes in biofeedback readings and may make certain self-regulation skills more difficult to acquire. Additionally, as you become more proficient at self-regulation, your medication needs may change so it is important to have your medications monitored throughout your training.
Q. Is biofeedback painful or uncomfortable? A. Biofeedback is not painful. In very rare cases some people have had uncomfortable experiences during biofeedback training or relaxation practices that can include unexpected sensations, images, experiences, feelings or thoughts. These experiences are never dangerous if they are addressed right away. I will always ask you about your experiences with training and will rely on your accurate reporting and honesty to let me know if you experience anything that makes you at all uncomfortable.
Q. My insurance company says biofeedback is experimental. If I participate in biofeedback training am I the subject of an experiment? A. Your insurance company is using the word "experimental" to deny payment and indicate that they haven't seen the same kind of research support for biofeedback for certain conditions that they are used to seeing for pharmaceuticals and other medical treatments.This is a difficulty with biofeedback research since the "gold standard" in the medical community is the double-blind random assignment model. In a double-blind model, neither the researcher nor the research participant knows whether they are receiving the treatment or a placebo and other variables are standardized as much as possible (doses, techniques, subject variables). This model cannot be applied to biofeedback training because ongoing knowledge of changes in one or more physiological variable(s) is critical to the training itself. If the researcher and the research participant were "blind" to the physiological changes, there could be no real biofeedback training. Additionally, the most effective clinical application of biofeedback training involves tailoring the learning process to the individual. This tailoring introduces uncontrolled variability into a research design. Although having passive subjects proceed with a standardized protocol makes for more standardized research, it works against the success of biofeedback training.
Any biofeedback training you receive from me will be based on research indicating efficacy and effectiveness as well as professional standards and guidelines.
A Note of Caution: The Association for Applied Psychophysiology & Biofeedback (AAPB) has issued a Consumer Warning concerning biofeedback devices and practitioners.
Q. I've heard Neurofeedback is a good treatment. Do you practice Neurofeedback? A. Neurofeedback is a type of biofeedback that works specifically with brain waves. There are now several types of neurofeedback. My primary field is General Biofeedback for individual adults and within that I use neurofeedback in conjunction with peripheral biofeedback and other measures for conditions such as depression, anxiety, post concussion syndrome, chronic pain, chronic fatigue, fibromyalgia, migraine and tension headaches, insomnia, and PTSD. If you have a condition for which Neurofeedback is specifically recommended, such as ADHD, learning disabilities, seizures, or substance abuse, or are seeking neurofeedback for a child, you should seek a provider whose speciality field is Neurofeedback. There are several Neurofeedback providers in the Vancouver and Portland areas and you can find listings of board certified providers by visiting the BCIA website (www.bcia.org).
Q. What kinds of conditions are appropriate for general biofeedback? A. Some conditions that may be appropriate for general biofeedback training include, but are not limited to, anxiety, arthritis, asthma, chronic pain, non-cardiac chest pain, depression, fibromyalgia, headache, hypertension, insomnia, irritable bowel syndrome, myofascial pain syndrome, phantom limb pain (burning or cramping/squeezing sensations), post-traumatic stress disorder, Raynaud's disease, stress and stress-related disorders, and temporomandibular disorders.
Q. Where can I go to learn more? A. Here are some good places to start:
Pain Exhibit: An educational, visual arts exhibit from artists with chronic pain. Its mission is to educate healthcare providers and the public about chronic pain through art and to give voice to the many who suffer in silence. http://www.painexhibit.com
Eric Hudson, a Portland OR artist has made stunning artwork out of his MRI images, transforming his relationship to his medical conditions and creating something positive and inspirational. ericchudson.com
Pain Society of Oregonhttp://www.painsociety.com
D. Nierenberg, Ph.D. Copyright June, 2007 Rev. Dec 2008