Sometimes over the course of therapy, it becomes clear that a more exact understanding of diagnosis and/or personality organization is necessary to facilitate the most change. Other times, people seek a diagnosis on for their own, or they want a full assessment of their emotional functioning to map the best course of treatment. This is when diagnostic and treatment planning evaluations can be extremely valuable- saving time and money in the long run by getting an unambiguous picture with specific steps forward that otherwise may take months or even years with therapy alone.
Usually, the first step of a diagnostic assessment is the initial consultation during which a plan for what tests will be performed and what the referral question is determined. From there, an idea for how long the testing will take and how much it will cost can be made. Most diagnostic assessments entail a variety of types of tests such as:
- A full clinical interview
- Cognitive testing
- Personality inventories
- Emotional functioning
- Social functioning inventories
- Projective measures of personality and psychological functioning
- Consultation with other providers and loved ones
Depending on the scope of testing it can take between 6-10 hours of in-person testing which is completed over the course of 3-4 sessions. It then takes 2 weeks to score, interpret and write up the results of the testing. These results are then presented in a 1.5-2 hour long feedback session.
During the feedback session, 2 reports will be presented: A full clinical report and a feedback report.
The full clinical report includes all the data that was collected over the course of testing, including a comprehensive history, the results of all the tests, a clinical discussion of the results, a summary, diagnosis and specific recommendations for treatment and ways to address concerns brought up during testing.
The feedback report includes just the highlights of that clinical report- the summary, diagnosis, and recommendations; written in clear, direct and easy to understand language.
The feedback session is a time for you to both hear the impressions and conclusions of the examiner and to ask questions. It is our goal to have every client have a full and clear understanding of the issues they are facing, their strengths and weaknesses and the way they interplay during this session. We also strive to establish a clear direction forward to address each of concerns uncovered during the course of the assessment with specific and individualized recommendations.