Here are some answers to questions that come up very frequently:
What does your name mean?
Our name came from the art one of our beloved and inspired founders produced when making our logo (at the bottom of this page) in 2006. That abstract art conjured the image of an owl in flight. Owls are symbolic of wisdom in many cultures and we loved the idea of wisdom in flight. Nest fit for us as representative of a warm, comforting place from which the people we serve might feel nourished and cared for. Lastly, the term “joint” refers not to a physical place, but a “joint effort” and “joint vision” for our intention to be something different and healing to others in this complex existence we call life.
What services do you provide and how do I know you’re right for me?
Owls’ Nest offers depth counseling and psychotherapy for individuals, families, children, adults and relationships, on a weekly, outpatient basis. We typically offer help to those struggling with issues related to adjustments and transitions, emotional and behavioral repatterning, healing deeper traumas, and dealing with existential struggles. We believe this occurs with consistent support and relational input that contradicts what you have learned through traumatizing relational experiences, thereby empowering you to slowly and subtly shift beliefs and expectations about life. This has the potential to result in behavior that is authentically who you are, and allows for positive and reinforcing feedback from the world around you. It is slow work, but we are committed to helping you be more of who you truly are.
For OHP subscribers, our contract prohibits us from treating severe and persistent mental health issues. Sometimes this means we have to refer you to area clinics that are contracted to treat those issues. Ethically and contractually speaking, we are not able to treat outside of our scope of practice, limits and capabilities. We will do our best to refer you to appropriate community services if our framework does not fit what you need.
I’m not receiving emails from you reliably. What can I do?
The interwebs have a complex way of guessing who might be sending spam or malware to the world. The robots that manage this operate with an over-abundance of caution and sometimes that means innocent domain names get flagged as bad. Many email servers see email from owlsnestnorth.com as potentially harmful, and automatically delete them or move them to your spam/junk box to protect you. The only way around this is for you to tell your email server that we’re a trustworthy source of email. You can do this typically by looking for a way to add owlsnestnorth.com to your safe senders/exceptions list in the settings of your email program. Your email server may call it something else, but until we are added, you may miss email from us that contains critical information. We do need a valid, reliable email address that you check regularly to communicate about policies and things of a logistical nature, including appointment offerings. While we cannot provide technical support to everyone who needs it, in large part because every email program and device is different, a search on google or in your email server’s help pages is likely to offer instructions on how to proceed.
What insurance do you accept and what are your fees?
We are not currently accepting clients with commercial, non-OHP insurance.
Owls’ Nest North is in-network for all Multnomah, Washington, and Clackamas Counties OHP plans and only under very rare circumstances are our services not covered by them. If you are outside one of these counties, and there is a good case for seeking services with us, we can explore obtaining a Single Case Agreement. These are typically limited dollar amounts if they are approved. Please be certain to include this information on your Intake submission so we have plenty of time to request the authorization. Sadly, we are not eligible to bill Medicare, even when you have OHP as secondary insurance.
Our standard rate for a 53-minute psychotherapy is $200. We have a deep sliding scale which you can read about below, and discounts for cash-pay clients differ based on clinician, but range from $120-165 OFF our standard rate. See individual clinician pages to learn specifics. We aim to make services affordable and accessible to all.
Will I have a copay?
How long is your waiting list? How long do I have to wait for an appointment?
This is 100% impossible to predict. If, for example, you are only available on Wednesdays at 2:30pm, you are literally waiting for a chance at three out of hundreds of clients to transition out of services for that spot to be open to you. If you have additional preferences in your counselor, such as age or gender, it narrows the options down further. If, on the other hand, you offer more flexibility, there are many more possibilities that could become available to you. No judgement…you are available when you are and you need what you need…just offering this scenario to clarify why waiting can be so unpredictable. We are a small operation and have a maximum of six therapists working at any given time.
Can I pay cash if I have OHP?
Unfortunately, OHP prohibits us from accepting cash from its subscribers. It’s their way of protecting more vulnerable people from being taken advantage of by unscrupulous providers. We recognize that it takes away your power to choose care for yourself, but our hands are tied if we continue to accept OHP. Please speak with your provider about other options for care while we wait for your authorization to expire.
Why do you have a cancellation policy?
Typically as counselors and therapists, we have the freedom to collect missed appointment fees from our clients that no-show or cancel without notice, which we do for our cash-pay and private insurance clients. However, our OHP contract stipulates that we cannot collect these fees from its subscribers. Because we operate like a non-profit despite being for-profit and pay our workers living wages alongside a healthy work-life balance, we simply would not be able to keep our doors open if we didn’t maintain our policy.
Therapy is hard work and, whether it’s conscious or not, we sometimes avoid our sessions in a variety of ways. In addition, life throws a lot at us that is outside of our control. We understand those things 100%. It’s not meant to be punitive…only to cope with the realities (and share the burden) of working within a system that is stacked against all of us.
What forms of payment do you accept?
What’s the deal with sliding scale?
Our sliding scale is meant for those who are literally underprivileged. It is structured and based on income. Please reconsider asking for sliding scale if you are supported by family money in any way, are not historically and systemically underprivileged, and/or have the freedom not to work. On the other hand, if you are truly in need, please let us know and we’ll provide you with application materials. We do require verification of income as part of the sliding scale application process.
Why can’t I reach someone on the phone?
We are all working hard with clients and managing the demands of our busy clinic. Our model also includes a healthy work-life balance for our staff. We have the awesome and honorable task of meeting everyone’s needs, including our own. We receive 10-30 inquiries every single day and have to triage our responses. Apologies if that leaves you feeling a less than personal experience. We do care about you and are pretty certain you will feel that when you walk in our door, if not sooner.
We simply have to have some limits in place to continue to provide quality counseling. That said, if you what you need really requires a phone call, by all means, leave us a message! We’ll get back to you as soon as humanly possible.
Do you provide couple’s counseling?
Most insurers do not cover couple’s counseling and, while many of our clinicians are trained to do so, we are unable to bill for that service. We do provide family counseling, however, and are happy to provide that upon request and are affirming of whomever you define as family.
If you are a cash-paying client or have insurance coverage that allows for couple’s work, we are happy to provide it and bill as well.