I believe in long visits. As you may know, the typical therapist meets for 50 minutes, once a week for weeks, months, or years, depending on the problem. I do not work like this.
I find the problem with meeting once a week for only 50 minutes is it seems that half the time we’re doing catch-up or crisis intervention:
“My brother said this, my teacher did that, my friend said this…”
Not that those things are not important, but they take away from the task at hand.
My typical visits are anywhere from 2 and ½ to 3 hours. There’s no question that we will accomplish a lot more in one visit of 150 to 180 visits than we could ever hope to accomplish in 3, 4, or even 5 visits of 50 minutes, once a week.
By having these longer, intensive visits, we actually save time in the long run because we are able to be more efficient and more effective in a shorter amount of time.
There is no question in my mind that we can therefore accomplish a lot more 150-180 minutes in one visit than we could ever accomplish once a week in 3, 4, or even 5 visits.
I meet with the parents alone, first, for an extended visit, in order to gain a complete medical and psychological history. And, since I pride myself on brief therapy, the typical patient shows significant improvement after only 1-4 visits (not including the parent visit).
This does not mean, of course, that a complete cure is expected after only a few visits. With biobehavioral conditions, one never knows how soon the results will take place.
At the last visit, when the patient has achieved his or her goal, we have what I like to call the “reward” or the “dessert visit.” At this visit, the patient is told something like, “Since you’ve accomplished your goal, what else would you like to work on today?” For example, I see a lot of athletes, and, someone might want to work on shooting a basket, or passing, or dribbling a basketball. I want the patients to learn that rather than simply taking a temporary pill, this offers them a lifetime skill. And, I want them to learn how to apply their new skills and techniques to other aspects of their lives.
Typically, there is no charge for phone calls. Because he feels it is important to provide personal, individualized service, Dr. Lazarus does not use e-mail to communicate with patients and parents.
Please feel free to email Dr. Lazarus to discuss the fee schedule directly.