*Dr. Spencer is currently not able to accept new evaluation clients. Evaluations remain available for existing clients of Spencer Psychology to ensure quality of care. *
An evaluation is for a client who has complex symptoms. It includes interviews, rating scales, formal psychological testing and sometimes collateral data. Collateral data can include the review of previous medical or counseling records, as well as talking with your other providers or family members. The finished evaluation includes history, diagnoses, conceptualization of the problem(s) and treatment recommendations. Dr. Spencer writes the evaluation, sometimes in tandem with one of the master’s level clinicians.
Types of Evaluations:
Doctors, psychiatrists, or therapists may request an evaluation to clarify diagnosis, treatment, and medication options for psychologically complex clients.
Evaluations for court purposes, including child protection cases and custody issues, are not offered. These are known as forensic psychological evaluations and are not part of our services.
Psychological testing is performed for all adults and adolescents fourteen years old and older. Testing for younger children is perfromed on a case by base basis. This will depend on the issue being evaluated and age of the child. Interview and parent data is often used instead of formal testing for young children.
Information collection involves three or four hours of interview time. This includes reviewing testing and diagnostics with the client. Usually, two separate appointment blocks are scheduled.
With your permission, we include a records review of relevant medical records, previous hospitalizations and previous/current therapy. The examiner may wish to talk to a collateral source like your therapist or spouse. For children, we need to speak with your child’s teacher and complete a parent interview to gather background information and behavioral concerns. Observations at the home, as well as your child’s school or daycare, may be conducted if relevant.
Once all the data is collected, the information is complied into a 10-20 page report. This will include the history, concerns, diagnosis, explanation of the diagnosis or diagnoses, and a treatment plan to reduce symptoms or resolve issues. Reports are typically ready in two weeks following your final interview appointment. The entire process from first appointment to completed report is about a month, depending on appointment availability.
The fee varies by insurance plan, your copay and deductible status. The out of pocket cost (after insurance) is usually $1800-$2,000, as insurance does not cover the bulk of the evaluation. We can give you an estimate if we know what insurance you have, and the issues you want the evaluation to include. A retainer of $1800 is required at the time of scheduling. A refund is issued for any amount that was not used.
If you would like more information, or would like to schedule an evaluation, please fill out the contact form and indicate that you would like an evaluation. Our staff will contact you to answer any questions, gather additional information about what you need, and give you an estimate of what portion your insurance might pay. You can also call or email us for more information.