Jessica Clifton, PhD
Psychologist & Research Consultant

Frequently Asked Questions
  Get started today. Below are frequently asked questions about therapy and helpful community resources.  
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+ Who do you serve?
We are trained as generalist to support the emotional and behavioral health of patients. Meaning we can provide support to a wide variety of individuals. The more time we've spent doing this work the more experience we have had with certain struggles. Much of this work has centered around supporting women through personal and professional changes and challenges. In providing this support, we have worked closely with healthcare providers collaborating with patient care as well as caring for our healthcare professionals directly as they navigate the difficulty terrain of working in medicine.

+ How do I get started?
There are several barriers to starting therapy. We started Parhelia Wellness as a way to improve access to well-trained providers and make scheduling therapy appointments easier for patients by allowing online scheduling, providing timely responses, and delivering our services through telehealth.

+ What happens in the first consultation?
In the first free 15-minute consultation, we will get to know each other and figure out next steps. For patients, that is deciding if there is a connection, feeling of safety, if tele-health feels right, and asking questions about Parhelia Wellness or the psychologist. For us, it's a chance to determine if we have the tools to support patients in reaching their goals and improving wellbeing. Together we can determine our next steps which often result in at-home suggestions and resources, setting up the first telepsychology appointment, or a referral to other provider(s). We do not charge for this time.

+ Does therapy have to be weekly?
Although weekly 55-minute therapy is often suggested to keep up momentum towards individual goals, in reality frequency can vary due to scheduling, cost, and need. We know that life is busy and schedules change. Based on this, Parhelia Wellness is designed so that individuals can choose appointment times and schedules that work best for them. Based on this, cost of therapy can vary.

+ What is the cancellation policy?
Ideally, we ask for 48 hours notice to cancel, but we also completely get that unexpected things come up. We do not charge for cancellations that are rescheduled. Patients can reschedule their appointments directly via their patient portal, message, email, or call.

+ How can I pay for these services?
You can pay for these services directly by credit card. For coaching or research consulting services, you will receive an invoice payable by credit card or check. For individual therapy, patients are billed and charged via credit card through our patient portal Simple Practice. We do not participate in any insurance networks and do not accept insurance. For patients with a health insurance policy and/or employee healthcare benefits (ie, FSA, HSA, or HRA) it will usually provide some coverage/reimbursement for telepsychology appointments (sometimes video-only is reimbursed, not audio). We will fill out forms and provide you with reasonable assistance to help you receive the benefits to which you are entitle; however, you (not your insurance/benefits) are responsible for full payment of fees. Based on this, it is very important that you find out exactly what mental health services your benefits will reimburse.

+ Do you prescribe medications?
Not at this time. Medications can be helpful in reducing specific symptoms and treating mental health conditions. Often medications are used in combination with other types of treatments, such as psychotherapy. Primary care providers (PCP) are typically the go to for prescribing medications for mental health conditions followed by psychiatrists. Parhelia Wellness is hoping to offer these services in the future. For now, please reach out to your PCP or psychiatrist for more information (Psychiatrist Finder).

+ Do people benefit from therapy?
Yes! Everyone has feelings of emotional ups and downs at some point in their life. An individual or couple may want to consider seeking professional support (ie, counselor, psychologist, behavioral and/or mental health provider) when these feelings are too much, too often, or are having a negative impact on other aspects of their life and relationships.

+ What is therapy?
Therapy (ie, psychotherapy, counseling, behavioral health care, mental health care) is a relationship between a patient and a provider based on regular interaction to help change behavior, increase wellbeing, reduce distress, overcome obstacles and reach goals.

+ What is telepsychology?
Telepsychology provides psychotherapy through video conferencing or telephone. It is often more convenient and takes less time. It can have some downsides as it does not always provide the same experience as in person therapy.

+ What is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)?
CBT psychotherapy includes strategies that help connect an individual's thoughts and beliefs about the world with their behaviors and emotional experiences. CBT has been shown to reduce distress, promote well-being, and help patients identify and reach their goals.

+ Are there other non-CBT related approaches?
There are over a hundred different approaches to therapy. Many therapies share several commonalities including the intention to help those in need. Aside from CBT, many other therapies can be categorized under psychodynamic/psychoanalysis or humanistic approaches. To find psychologists by approach, check out the APA Locator and filter by "treatment methods." To find out more about what approaches might be helpful for what conditions, see APA Society of Clinical Psychology section on treatments.

+ What are the alternatives to therapy?
For those experiencing mild symptoms, self-help resources such as books or apps can be helpful for learning new skills and ways of thinking. Not all self-help books are equal and many are written by non-experts without any scientific evidence; however, professional organizations have tried to consolidate helpful recommendations for patients and providers (see ABCT, ACBS, and APA).

For those in immediate danger call 911 or visit your local emergency room. If you or someone you know is in need of support now, call 988 for free and confidential support. For those experiencing extreme distress (psychosis or thinking of harming self or others) and/or substance abuse local treatment may be more beneficial. See SAMHSA’s online treatment locator:

  Accepting New Patients Tele-health

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Consumer Notice: [CA] The California Department of Consumer Affairs receives questions and complaints regarding the practice of psychology. If you have any questions or complaints, you may contact this department by calling 800-633-2322 or (916) 574-7720, or by writing to the following address: Board of Psychology, 1625 North market Street, Suite N-215, Sacramento, CA 95834. [VT] A copy of Vermont rules of conduct including how to file a complaint may be obtained from the Vermont Office of Professional Regulation.

The information on this page is for general informational purposes only. The information and third party links provided are not an endorsement or a substitute for professional mental health, medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Choosing to take action on this information is solely based on your deicision, at your own risk, with no liability on our part, and does not create a therapist-patient relationship between you and Parhelia Wellness or Jessica Clifton.