Getting Started with Counseling

The behavioral health field measures need in two areas: level of internal distress and level of functioning.  Do you feel distressed a significant portion of your waking hours?  Counseling might be right for you.  Are you struggling to accomplish basic life tasks?  Counseling might be right for you.  Are neither of these things true but you really want someone to talk to?  Counseling might still be right for you.  Come talk to us!

Finding the right professional to work with you in sensitive areas of your life can be challenging. Pittsburgh Pastoral Institute employs licensed professionals of diverse expertise, backgrounds, and across various locations. Our intake team will do their best to match you with someone who fits what you are looking for.  

What is the intake process like?

First Step: Intake Team

The first step is to call our intake line at 412-661-1239 x 216 or 1-877-661-9623.  The intake team will ask you for information including your contact information, insurance, and a brief explanation of what brings you to seek counseling. They will also want to know if you are looking for a therapist of a particular gender, faith orientation, or any other specifics.  After you complete the initial call, the intake team will verify your insurance or other payment plan and estimate with you how much you will need to pay per session.  They will then contact a therapist who fits your requested descriptors as closely as possible and is as geographically convenient as possible.  

Second Step: Scheduling

Your new counselor/psychotherapist will call you to schedule the first session.  In order to save time in the first session, they will also ask you to fill out paperwork that they will send to you.  If you have any questions or concerns about the paperwork, the therapist will be happy to address those with you.

Third Step: First Session

In the first session, the therapist will ask for your paperwork and have you sign a fee agreement.  You will already know the content of the fee agreement through the intake team. They will talk to you about the Pittsburgh Pastoral Institute confidentiality policy.  They will also want to hear about what brought you to see a counselor.  At the end of the session they will ask when you want to reschedule.  If you feel the counselor is not the right person for you, you can request that they refer you to someone else.  This will probably require further conversation with the intake team.  If you feel good about the session, however, you have completed the intake process and can proceed with therapy.

Start at the beginning, one step at a time.

Start at the beginning, one step at a time.