Why don’t you accept health insurance?
Although neuropsychological testing is considered to be a health-related service (covered by health insurance), we add educational assessments to the “standard assessment.” Educational testing is not covered by health insurance and if the insurance companies find out that this component has been added, they will not cover the claim for payment. Also, the different insurance companies pay vastly different amounts for the same test battery and we are not allowed to “balance bill” when the payment is insufficient. We sincerely regret that it has been impossible to work out a workable system with the health insurance companies. Our goal is to provide comprehensive assessments and the current medical insurance system will not pay for this type of service.
Can I submit a claim to my insurance company myself?
Yes. We will help you by providing a copy of the ledger card at the conclusion of the evaluation. Some families have succeeded in obtaining reimbursement for a portion of the charges of our evaluations.
After the evaluation is complete, are you able to talk to my child’s teacher (therapist, medication provider)?
Yes. We can contact teachers and other providers by telephone or email, with your expressed permission. Some families invite teachers and other providers to the summary meetings to go over our findings.
I have been reading about Asperger’s Disorder and I think my child has it. How do you determine if a child has Asperger’s Disorder?
Children who carry the diagnosis of Asperger’s Disorder have features in their developmental history and in their social interactions in the office that help to make this diagnosis. There are features in neuropsychological testing that are commonly associated with Asperger’s Disorder also, so this is an added evaluation component that other mental health professionals cannot offer.
Do you evaluate children for Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder?
Yes. Adolescents and adults too.
What is Nonverbal Learning Disorder?
Nonverbal Learning Disorder (NLD) is a learning problem that affects visual/spatial reasoning and visual pattern recognition. Usually, this learning problem does not affect early reading and spelling. The typical NLD student starts to have difficulty in middle school with subjects like geography, science and geometry because these subjects rely on strong visual reasoning skills. NLD students often have social difficulties because it is hard for them to interpret the visual cues that are so important in social interactions (i.e., facial expression, body language). Because of this problem with social interactions, NLD students are often misdiagnosed as Asperger’s Disorder.
My child is like “Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.” One minute, he is irritable and confrontational; an hour later, he acts like nothing happened. Could he be Bipolar?
The diagnosis of Bipolar Disorder requires careful attention to the past history and the pattern of behaviors that have been taking place in the present. Since children and adolescents who carry the diagnosis of Bipolar Disorder have trouble with mood regulation, neuropsychological testing can assess self-regulation capacities in a more general way to determine if there is a problem with this aspect of cognitive functioning. Projective testing can help with making the diagnosis because it samples emotional reactions to a variety of stimuli.
My child gets upset every night about doing homework and a 20 minute assignment can take two hours. The school did an evaluation and they did not find anything wrong.
This is a common problem and it is not possible to give a simple answer because there are many different difficulties that can produce this pattern. For example, suppose your child can read grade-level materials but her reading speed is 50% of the normal speed for her age. The school’s testing will show grade-appropriate reading performance; the child will be frustrated at home because reading assignments take twice as long. Poor attention skills, reading comprehension difficulties and emotional problems are other possible explanations for this situation.
Do you make medication recommendations?
We are psychologists, so we do not make specific medication recommendations (and we are not medication prescribers). We do identify (and evaluate the severity of) problems that are amenable to medication intervention: Mood regulation, depressed mood, attention, anxiety, sleep disturbance, and thought disorders.
My child has been going for regular counseling but it doesn’t seem to be helping.
Neuropsychological and clinical testing can often be useful in this situation. Family conflicts over academic performance (to give one example) may not respond well to counseling if the nature and severity of a child’s learning disability is not clearly understood.
Do you test adults for Attention Deficit Disorder?
Yes. Adults have become increasingly aware that attention difficulties can have adverse effects on relationships and on performance at work.
I am only 55 years old but I have noticed that my memory seems to be deteriorating. Can you test for Alzheimer’s Disease?
There are memory, attention and spatial reasoning difficulties that have been associated with Alzheimer’s Disease and testing can help to identify these patterns (and determine the severity). It is best to consult your primary care physician before considering neuropsychological evaluation to rule out physical causes for a memory problem.
I was in an automobile accident and I was knocked unconscious. Now I feel like I cannot pay attention very well and I get tired easily. Should I have testing?
Testing would be able to document skills that are often adversely affected in mild traumatic brain injury, such as memory, attention and speed of processing. Most accident victims consult a neurologist before obtaining a neuropsychological evaluation.
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