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Frequently Asked Questions

How can counseling be helpful?

Caring and competent professionals can help you gain perspective, insight, understanding, and tools for managing or even conquering whatever personal challenges you may be facing.

What groups do you have and how can they be helpful?

San Tan Counseling currently offers the following groups:

Contact San Tan Counseling for current classes.

Group therapy can be helpful in four ways:

1. Group therapy provides observations and counsel from other participants who are going through, or have gone through similar experiences.
2. Group therapy can provide a supportive and safe therapeutic environment.
3. It is more cost-effective than individual therapy.
4. Group therapy provides a professional education element

What should I look for in a counselor?

The most important element in your counseling experience will be the relationship and/or connection that you feel with your counselor. You will likely be able to tell if the “connection” is going to happen in the first or second session. If you do not feel comfortable with your counselor, please ask for a change. You are seeking services and need to have the best help for you.

A second element to consider when selecting a counselor is the counselor’s training, education, and experience. At San Tan Counseling, we have the best counselors in the area. They are competent, caring, and capable professionals.

What is the difference between Ph.D., PsyD, EdD, LMFT, LCSW, and LPC?
Can you prescribe medication?

Currently, at San Tan Counseling we do not have a provider on staff that is licensed to prescribe medication. Our counselors are familiar with psychotropic medication and are able to refer you to a psychiatrist, medical doctor, or psychiatric nurse practitioner when medication is considered to be a viable option in conjunction with therapy. In such cases, we are able to provide continuity of care with medical services.

Is this service HIPAA compliant?

The HIPAA regulations have emphasized the importance of keeping account information confidential. San Tan Counseling follows all applicable state and federal regulations with regard to its business practices, including data and software security. When you come in for your first appointment, you will have an opportunity to view our policies and to receive a copy of the regulations. San Tan Counseling is committed to keeping patient information confidential and is committed to ongoing education training for HIPAA compliance.

How long will I have to be involved in counseling?

Counseling is most successful when the patient is actively engaged in their therapeutic process. This commitment includes your time, insight, effort, finances, and follow-up. The length of time for counseling will vary by personality and by the nature of the challenge. Industry averages are usually 6 to 12 sessions, although some situations call for fewer sessions, and some others for more.

How do I get started?

Getting started is as easy as a phone call. Telephone 480.982.2356 between 8:30 am and 4:30 pm Tuesday– Thursday. San Tan Counseling staff will assist by taking demographic information, fitting you with the best counselor for your concerns, and scheduling an appointment. Our staff can help you verify your insurance benefits and clarify your financial responsibility.

More questions? Please call: 480.982.2356

What is a Psychiatrist, Psychologist, Marriage and Family Therapist, Licensed Clinical Social Worker, and Licensed Professional Counselor?

Psychiatrist, Psychologist, Ph.D., LCSWs, MFTs, LPCs,


They are all head doctors, right?  What

do all of the initials mean? Which one should I go to?  Many people, even relatively sophisticated individuals often aren’t sure what distinguishes one from another.  


Psychiatrist – (MD or DO)


Psychiatrists are doctors who have graduated from a medical school and practice the branch of medicine involved with the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of mental and emotional disorders.  Most physicians, regardless of specialty, go through more or less identical training in medical school and postgraduate internship, then specialize during a period of advanced training called a residency.  A psychiatric residency is usually a three-year program.


Because their primary training is medical, very few psychiatrists undergo in–depth, specialized preparation in psychosocial (counseling) treatments, and those who do are usually trained in psychodynamic methods.  Therefore, the first line of treatment for most psychiatrists will be to prescribe medication.


Psychologist (PhD, PsyD, or EdD) 


Psychologists have had a least one year of post-doctoral internship experience in a clinical setting, and like physicians, are licensed to practice under Arizona state laws. Clinical psychologists are trained in the art and science of applied psychology – the study of human thought, emotion, behavior, and relationships. They are trained to diagnose, assess, do psychological testing, use research methodology and non-medicalpsychosocial therapies and treatment methods.  While in most settings they are not permitted to prescribe medication, psychologists have been trained recently in psychopharmacology and are prepared to work closely with psychiatrists and other medical practitioners when medication is necessary.


Marriage and Family Therapist (MFT)


Therapists can be either master-level clinicians or doctoral-level clinicians licensed in the State of Arizona.  An MFT has been trained in behavioral, interpersonal, and developmental problems specific to intimate relations like a family experience.  They are typically trained in clinical and interviewing skills, diagnosis, assessment, relationship dynamics, emotional issues, addictions, psychological, and behavioral intervention. Many MFT programs teach medical pharmacology, but MFT practitioners are not licensed to prescribe medication, however, they will work with physicians who can prescribe medications.


Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW)


Master-level social work clinician who has spent a

minimum of two years in post-graduate in supervised clinical practice, and is licensed in the State of Arizona. LCSWs’ treatment modality is to assess, identify, diagnose, and treat an individual within the context of their social framework and attempt to account for circumstances that impact their experience. Their training in relation to pharmacology is limited, but like psychologists are prepared to work closely with medical practitioners when medication is necessary.

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