Frequently Asked Questions
Clinical Health Psychology Services in the WRHA
What is a psychologist?
A psychologist is a health professional who assesses how we think, feel and behave from a scientific viewpoint and applies this knowledge to promote health and well-being by helping people understand and change their thoughts and behavior.
What training and qualifications does a psychologist have?
Psychologists within the Clinical Health Psychology Program are Medical Staff in the WRHA. They hold doctoral (Ph. D or Psy.D.) degrees and are registered for practice by the Psychological Association of Manitoba.
Psychology residents and doctoral students may also provide services under the supervision of a registered psychologist. The training program is accredited by the Canadian Psychological Association.
Do I have to pay to see a psychologist?
Most psychology services at hospital facilities (inpatient and outpatient) are provincially funded through Manitoba Health. In a few outpatient treatment programs, a small fee is charged for printed materials and workbooks. Psychologist services in the community are available privately on a fee-for-service basis by registered psychologists. Costs can typically be partially reimbursed through extended health benefits.
How do I access psychological services in the hospital system?
Usually a referral from a health care provider such as the family physician is required to access psychology services within the hospitals. Some problems need to be medically diagnosed by a physician in order to receive appropriate treatment. At times there are recommendations that are made by the psychologist that require a physician to follow through.
My physician said he/she was going to make a referral for me to see a psychologist and I want to know if this has been done yet.
You can check with your physician, or you can call the general office or specific site and we'll check to see if we have received the referral.
How will I know that I have been referred?
Typically, you will receive a letter from us and a copy will be sent to the referring physician acknowledging the referral.
Are things I talk about with a psychologist confidential?
Your health information is private and all psychologists are trained to maintain that privacy. The limits to confidentiality are 1) that health care providers and records may be subpoenaed by a court of law, and 2) health care providers, by law, must report any concern regarding a child in need of protection or a serious concern that an individual is intending to harm her/himself or someone else.
How long will I have to wait to see a psychologist?
The number of psychologists working in WRHA hospitals and facilities is well below the national average and there is a considerable demand for services. Wait periods vary. You will typically be informed of the wait period after the referral is received.
How long will I have to stay in hospital for testing?
You will not typically beadmitted to hospital for psychological testing, but will be seen as an outpatient. Testing time varies from 1-6 hours of testing. You will be notified when the appointment is arranged.
How long will I have to wait to see a psychologist for a neuropsychological assessment?
Priorities are given to patients already in hospital or referrals of an urgent nature. Testing is conducted on a one-to-one basis and the wait could be up to several months.
Do I have to study for this type of test?
No special preparation is required.
Do I have to give blood?
Do I have to exercise?
If I’m there for the full day, is lunch provided?
No. Time will be provided for rest and meal breaks when testing has been scheduled for the full day.
Am I allowed to take my medication before my appointment?
Yes, continue taking all regularly prescribed medication as usual.
Why do I have to bring eyeglasses?
Some tests involve a lot of reading or close-up work. If you normally wear glasses for any activities, they are needed for the testing.
Can my partner stay in the room with me during testing?
No, unless there's an existing medical condition requiring nursing care.