Counseling Services Staff will provide care to students with mental health, social, and emotional problems that interfere with their personal, interpersonal, and academic lives. Students will be treated based upon short-term, time-limited counseling that emphasizes life skills enhancement. Students with more specialized counseling needs (including those who would benefit from longer-term counseling) will be provided with appropriate referral information for treatment in the community. All decisions about the provision of counseling services to a student will be made solely on the basis of clinical judgment and the availability of necessary resources and are not based on the student's race, color, religion, gender/gender expression, age, sexual orientation, marital status, national origin, disability, or status as a disabled veteran. If you are referred to an outside resource, you are responsible for any fees associated with such service.
To best meet the needs of as many students as possible, there is a limit to the type and amount of services available. Students who are deemed to be within SIUE Counseling Services' scope of practice can be seen for up to 10 individual counseling sessions per presenting issue as determined appropriate by the Counseling Services Clinical Team. Possible exceptions to this limit will be decided by the Clinical Team. Students who complete 10 sessions and subsequently return to Counseling Services for the same issue will be referred to a community provider.
At times, counseling demands may exceed our Department’s resources. If you come during one of these high demand periods, you might be placed on a waiting list or referred to another agency. In the event of an emergency, persons will be asked to complete a crisis form, and be seen by a counseling services staff member to assess safety and determine treatment direction.
Confidentiality and Recordings
Each individual is entitled to privacy in his/her work with a counselor. All contacts with a counselor are confidential to the Counseling and Health Services professional staff. Written permission is required for Counseling Services to release information to others. A court order may require an exception to the lawful protection of individual legal rights to privileged communication with a counselor or psychiatrist.
If it becomes clear in the counseling session that there is a real danger to oneself or to others, we are required to take action to help maintain safety. Also, reports of suspected abuse of children or others unable to care for themselves will also require some action to be taken. Counselors are legally and ethically required to address these kinds of imminent safety risks, even if it involves breaking confidentiality.
A record is kept of an individual's work with us. It contains information individuals have provided to us in writing as well as counseling notes of individual sessions. As of Fall 2010, records are kept in secure electronic form for a period seven (7) years after the student's last visit. Previous to Fall 2010, paper records were destroyed after a period of seven (7) years after an individual's last visit. Counseling Services files never become a part of the permanent SIUE educational record .
Additional records of sessions are sometimes taken such as the counselor's personal notes and audio tapes. These are destroyed in a timely manner and do not become part of an individual's counseling record. SIUE Counseling Services is a training site for master's and doctoral level therapists in training. These trainees are required to video record their sessions for quality control and training purposes ONLY. These recordings are destroyed in a timely manner and never become a part of the individuals counseling record.
If you have questions about confidentiality and your privacy, please talk with a counselor.
Prior to a counselor releasing confidential information to a thrid party, the client must complete and sign the Release of Information form.
Counseling information cannot be released to the following without the client's consent:
Inconsistent attendance at scheduled appointments interferes with the effectiveness of counseling, and also limits Counseling Services’ ability to help the greatest number of students. We have developed the following policies in an effort to ensure success in therapy:
After the intake session, when a client has established a therapeutic relationship with their assigned counselor who has thoroughly assessed his or her situation, the assigned counselor will decide whether medication may be an appropriate adjunctive treatment option. Counseling Services has a part-time psychiatrist on staff to address the medication needs of current clients. The psychiatrist provides services only to eligible clients referred by a counselor at Counseling Services. Clients can only meet with the psychiatrist if they are also under the care of a counselor at Counseling Services.
In accordance with APA Ethical Guidelines (10.04 Providing Therapy to Those Served by Others), Students may see only one individual therapy provider at a time; therefore, if a student is already receiving mental health services outside of SIUE, they are encouraged to continue working with that provider. Students who wish to discontinue seeing their outside provider and start seeing a counselor at Counseling Services may discuss this with their intake counselor or the Care Coordinator.
It is important for students to understand that the assessment and diagnosis of Attention Deficit Disorder/Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADD/ADHD) is a serious matter. Therefore, SIUE is dedicated to a diligent and professional protocol of assessment when ADD/ADHD is suspected. SIUE Counseling Services will provide testing to rule out an ADD/ADHD Diagnosis, but the staff psychiatrist will not prescribe medication to treat ADD/ADHD. Students who wish to pursue medication to treat ADD/ADHD will be referred to a community provider. The charge for ADHD Testing is $100 ($50 due at first appointment and $50 due at results session).
Steps for being tested for ADD/ADHD at SIUE:
Please Note: It is important for the testing to be completed at a time when you are not taking medication to treat ADHD. Failure to do so will negatively impact the validity of the results.
Please click the link to learn more about Counseling Services & Disability Support Services' partnership to ensure adequate diagnosis and quality of care.
Student complaints are handled largely through the existing chain of command. Given the existing laws regarding confidentiality and psychological/health services, a therapist/health service provider is restricted in terms of what he or she can disclose. If a student has a complaint about an employee or consultant of Counseling Services or Health Service, he or she is directed to speak with that employee's director, or if necessary, the immediate supervisor of the employee. The complaint should initially be lodged informally by speaking with someone in the department. However, the complaint can be lodged more formally in writing first to the Director within five (5) working days of the incident. The written complaint or grievance should include a description of the incident, date, time, and persons involved in the complaint.
After receiving the grievance, the director shall then respond within five (5) working days of the date that the grievance was signed and filed. If the student is not satisfied with the outcome of that discussion or response, he or she is directed to the next higher level of administration. In each case, careful consideration is given to the emotional stress the student may already be in as well as any complications arising from a possible mental or physical illness. If a complaint comes from a non-student, it is handled administratively first by the director, then by the Associate Vice-Chancellor of Student Affairs, and finally, if necessary, the Vice-Chancellor for Student Affairs. The Director reserves the right to consult with the General Counsel of the University around issues or complaints that may have legal implications. Documentation of a student complaint would become part of the confidential record.
If the student is not satisfied with his or her current therapist or health care provider, he or she can request another therapist within the department at no charge or accept a referral to another provider outside the university. Any costs incurred by the student seeking these services outside of the university are not covered by the university.
Any complaints, if found to have merit, will be used in the supervision of the employee involved to improve the person's skills and function. If the complaint is significant, the student may take legal action as prescribed by current statutes. Each week the clinical staff meets in a case conference to discuss problematic cases to ensure quality of service to the student.
In order to best meet the needs of students, Counseling Services does not provide counseling for SIUE faculty or staff. However, if a faculty or staff member requests personal counseling services, our staff can help arrange a referral to the University's EAP (Employee Assistance Program) or another mental health professional. Please see the following link for more information about the EAP: (http://www2.illinois.gov/cms/employees/benefits/pages/employeeassistanceprogram.aspx).
If you are submitting a Cancellation of Single Student Housing Contract request and indicating Counseling Considerations as your reason, please note the following guidelines. These guidelines will be used when reviewing the cancellation request.
If the student is not currently seeing a Medical/Mental Health Professional, the student will need to do the following:
Documentation from the Medical/Mental Health Professional must include: