Psychological Testing

Cartaya Clinic:  Psychological and Psycho-Educational Testing and Evaluation

These assessments are usually scheduled on Tuesday and Wednesday mornings.
Because half days are reserved for each individual’s assessment and testing, there is a non-refundable deposit of $750 to schedule the initial interview and testing period.  The balance of any remaining charges is due at the time of the final report and meeting, which is typically 1 week following completion of testing.

About Psychological Testing

Psychological evaluations can be useful for individuals across the life span, assisting in the recognition of strengths and vulnerabilities, interpersonal patterns and personality styles, learning aptitudes and challenges, and mental health conditions.  Physicians often recommend psychological testing for evaluation of specific diagnoses including Attention Deficit Disorders, Learning Disabilities, anxiety, mood, or thought disorders, memory concerns and capacity assessments, or difficulties in communication.  Psychological tests can also provide important information about areas of strength and particular aptitudes.  These assessments provide significant guidance on personalized treatments and therapies, lead to important and active changes within a person’s life, and improve quality and efficacy in relationships, education, careers, and personal health.  Psychological testing is designed to be empowering for insight, compassion, and effective care strategies.

Format:  Each psychological evaluation is always tailored for the individual.  We invite records from multiple sources to be sent to the office prior to the evaluation, from family members, teachers, physicians, counselors, or others who can provide accurate information about past and present functioning and concerns. Dr. Cartaya personally reviews the records, and then meets with the patient to discuss concerns, review medical, academic, and vocational history, and understand social, cognitive, and emotional functioning.  Following the 90 minute initial interview, there is a “testing” session that typically lasts between 3 and 6 hours, but sometimes for as many as 8 hours.   While some individuals find psychological testing interesting and even fun, others may experience anxiety, frustration, or boredom, especially when tasks are challenging.  Breaks and short rests can be scheduled, and for some, scheduling testing sessions into two separate appointments can be very helpful. The goal throughout testing is to make the experience as comfortable, relaxing, and enjoyable as possible.

Content and Reports:  Psychological assessments will typically use a combination of tests which are individually selected by Dr. Cartaya, after she has clarified the goals of the assessment.  These will measure a number of domains including intellectual functioning, cognitive abilities, aptitude or achievement skills, attention and concentration testing, as well as personality and emotional/behavioral assessments. Some tests are administered on paper, and others on a computer. The wide range in variety of tests is important to accurately assess the true nature of strengths and weakness.  After the assessment session is complete,  Dr. Cartaya will set aside time to personally interpret the tests, and to prepare a detailed report of the results, with specific and personalized recommendations.  She then has a final meeting with the patient to discuss the report and recommendations.

For educational purposes and learning needs, the report can be very helpful to the further assist the individual, treatment teams, parents, employers, or schools with specific ideas for educational interventions, counseling, organization/productivity, local programs/organizations to further support goal areas and success in workplaces or academic programs. Dr. Cartaya is available to correspond or meet with school personnel or employers with the patient’s permission, to assist with implementing any needed accommodations.

Payment and Insurance:  Dr. Cartaya is an out of network provider and does not participate in insurance panels. Please be aware that psychological testing is not always covered by health insurance, as your policy provider may have very specific exclusions to restrict access to testing, or considers psychological testing “not medically necessary” except under very narrow parameters or diagnoses that have already been made.   If reimbursement from insurance is desired, it is very important that our patients speak to the insurance company about their out-of-network coverage specific for psychological testing, and also whether pre-authorization or a physician referral is required.  At the time of testing, we will provide information and receipts on the services and fees, which may help communication with an insurance company about out-of-network benefits or reimbursement.

Privacy Considerations:  Psychological testing provides a comprehensive evaluation of your personal strengths and weaknesses as well as information regarding several aspects of your current functioning and personality characteristics, which inform diagnosis and treatment.  This is personal health information, and the Cartaya Clinic is committed to privacy and full confidentiality of the test findings and reports.