CAPS: Frequently Asked Questions

ADHD
1. Does CAPS prescribe medication for ADHD?

Appointments
1. Do I have to make an appointment, or can I just walk in?
2. How do I make an appointment?
3. How long do appointments last?

Confidentiality
1. Are CAPS services confidential?
2. If I talk about drinking or using drugs will I get in trouble?
3. Will my parents or professors find out that I’m coming to CAPS?

Consultation
1. I am a faculty/staff member, and I am concerned about a student. What should I do?
2. I know someone at UGA who I think needs help. What should I do?

Costs and Billing
1. Are there any charges for CAPS services?
2. Can I receive services at CAPS if I haven’t paid the student health fee?
3. What should I do if I can’t afford to come to CAPS?
4. What options do I have for payment?
5. Will CAPS file with my health insurance?

Emergencies and Crisis Situations
1. I need help right away. What should I do?

Location and Hours
1. Where is CAPS located, and what are the hours?

Medication

1. Does CAPS prescribe medication?
2. How long does it take to get an appointment for an initial psychiatric evaluation?
3. I already have a counselor somewhere else who recommended medication. Can I come to CAPS?
4. Can I come to CAPS if I am interested in getting medication but really don’t want to do any kind of counseling?
5. If I come to CAPS do I have to take medication?
6. What happens during an initial evaluation for medication?
7. Will CAPS renew the prescription I have that was prescribed by someone else?

Services
1. Am I eligible to use CAPS services?
2. Can I ask for a different counselor if the one I am working with isn’t a good fit for me?
3. Can I come to CAPS even if I don’t think my problems are very serious?
4. Does CAPS provide academic counseling?
5. How can I get the most out of counseling?
6. How do I know if I need to come to CAPS?
7. I need help obtaining a hardship withdrawal, will CAPS provide me with documentation?
8. Is CAPS the only place on campus that offers mental health services?
9. Is there a limit on how much counseling I can receive?
10. Someone already prescribes medication for me. Can I come to CAPS for counseling?
11. What can I expect during my initial appointment?
12. What is the difference between counseling and psychotherapy?
13. What services does CAPS offer?
14. What workshops does CAPS offer?
15. Who provides services at CAPS?
16. Who will be my counselor?


ADHD


1. Does CAPS prescribe medication for ADHD?
Read more about our ADHD medication policy.


Appointments


1. Do I have to make an appointment, or can I just walk in?
Read more about scheduling the initial screening appointment. No appointment is required if you are experiencing an urgent or crisis situation. You may walk into CAPS, and you will be seen on the same day.

2. How do I make an appointment?
If you have never been to CAPS, or it has been more than 6 months since your last appointment, you will need to schedule an initial screening appointment by using the online Patient Portal or by calling our office during business hours at 706-542-2273. If you are a current client and need to schedule an appointment, please contact our office. Only the initial screening appointment can be made by using the online Patient Portal.

3. How long do appointments last?
The initial screening appointment is scheduled for 30 minutes. You will need to arrive at least 15 minutes early to complete some brief paperwork. If you are a current client, the appointment length will depend on the appointment type.


Confidentiality


1. Are CAPS services confidential?
Read more about CAPS confidentiality policies.

2. If I talk about drinking or using drugs will I get in trouble?
CAPS clinicians cannot release information about you, even whether you are a current or former CAPS client, without your written consent. Exceptions to this may occur in situations when there is an immediate threat to your life or welfare or to the life or welfare of another person. Read more about CAPS confidentiality policies.

3. Will my parents or professors find out that I’m coming to CAPS?
Your CAPS records do not become part of your academic record. CAPS clinicians cannot release information about you, even whether you are a current or former CAPS client, without your written consent. Exceptions to this may occur in situations when there is an immediate threat to your life or welfare or to the life or welfare of another person. Read more about CAPS confidentiality policies.


Consultation


1. I am a faculty/staff member, and I am concerned about a student. What should I do?
Read more about resources for UGA faculty and staff. If you would like to consult with CAPS about a situation that concerns you, during regular business hours (Monday through Friday, 8am to 5pm) you may contact our office at (706) 542-2273 and ask to speak to a walk-in clinician or a member of the CAPS leadership team. For after-hours crisis consultation you may contact the UGA Police Department at (706) 542-2200 and ask to speak to the CAPS on-call clinician. Read more about CAPS consultation services.

2. I know someone at UGA who I think needs help. What should I do?
If you would like to consult with CAPS about a situation that concerns you, during regular business hours (Monday through Friday, 8am to 5pm) you may contact our office at (706) 542-2273 and ask to speak to a walk-in clinician or a member of the CAPS leadership team. For after-hours crisis consultation you may contact the UGA Police Department at (706) 542-2200 and ask to speak to the CAPS on-call clinician. Read more about CAPS consultation services.


Costs and Billing


1. Are there any charges for CAPS services?
Read more about CAPS costs.

2. Can I receive services at CAPS if I haven’t paid the student health fee?
Read more about the UHC student health fee.

3. What should I do if I can’t afford to come to CAPS?
For clients with demonstrated financial need, a limited amount of grant money is available to help with fees for CAPS services through a fund established by the UGA Parents Leadership Council. CAPS also provides referral assistance to other resources when costs are a concern.

4. What options do I have for payment?
Clients may pay for CAPS fees out-of-pocket, have charges billed to their UHC account, or have the option of requesting that the UHC submit CAPS charges to their health insurance providers. Read more about UHC costs.

5. Will CAPS file with my health insurance?
Clients have the option of requesting that the UHC submit CAPS charges to their health insurance providers. Read more about UHC costs.


Emergencies and Crisis Situations


1. I need help right away. What should I do?
CAPS provides crisis services 24 hours a day, 365 days a year for urgent situations (e.g. you are thinking about harming yourself or another person, you are in so much distress that you are unable to function in your daily activities, or you cannot keep yourself safe). During regular business hours students in crisis may call CAPS at 706-542-2273 and speak with a clinician or walk into CAPS with no appointment required and be seen by a clinician. After-hours and on weekends or holidays, CAPS may be contacted by calling the UGA Police Department at 706-542-2200 and asking to speak with the CAPS on-call clinician. For imminently life threatening situations, please contact 911.Read more about CAPS costs.


Location and Hours


1. Where is CAPS located, and what are the hours?
Read more about CAPS location, hours, and contact information.


Medication


1. Does CAPS prescribe medication?
Read more about CAPS psychiatric services.

2. How long does it take to get an appointment for an initial psychiatric evaluation?
The wait time for an initial appointment may be several weeks.

3. I already have a counselor somewhere else who recommended medication. Can I come to CAPS?
If you would like to begin psychiatric services at CAPS, and you are engaged in counseling services with an outside provider, you will need to transfer all of your mental health treatment to CAPS.

4. Can I come to CAPS if I am interested in getting medication but really don’t want to do any kind of counseling?
We ask individuals who primarily are interested in medication to be open to a referral to a CAPS clinician for counseling if it is recommended. We can assist with referrals to outside psychiatric providers if you are not interested in pursuing counseling at CAPS if it recommended.

5. If I come to CAPS do I have to take medication?
Clients are not required to take medication, and not all clients need medication.

6. What happens during an initial evaluation for medication?
For the initial psychiatric evaluation you will meet with one of CAPS psychiatric providers for about 50 minutes to discuss symptoms you may be experiencing and how those symptoms are affecting you. The psychiatric provider may make a recommendation for medication if it is determined to be appropriate for you. Recommendations for medication do not obligate you to take the medication.

7. Will CAPS renew the prescription I have that was prescribed by someone else?
If you already are prescribed psychiatric medication from a provider outside of CAPS you may be able to transfer your medication management to CAPS. Transfer of medication is not permitted without first having an initial screening appointment. Individuals who are interested in transferring medication should maintain a relationship with their current care provider and an adequate supply of medication and as this process could take several weeks.


Services


1. Am I eligible to use CAPS services?
Read more about UHC eligibility. Any questions about eligibility to use UHC services can be directed to Registration and Health Information at 706-542-8617.

2. Can I ask for a different counselor if the one I am working with isn’t a good fit for me?
If you have concerns about your CAPS clinician, we ask that you first talk to him/her to try to come to a resolution. If you find that you just are not a good fit for your clinician, CAPS does permit reassignment to another clinician but discourages multiple requests for reassignment.

3. Can I come to CAPS even if I don’t think my problems are very serious?
Yes. We all experience times when we could use some extra emotional support, even when we have concerns that we do not think are “serious.” Some students choose to seek out this support at CAPS.

4. Does CAPS provide academic counseling?
While mental health concerns may impact academic functioning, CAPS is not a primary resource on campus for academic counseling. The Division of Academic Enhancement provides a wide range of services designed to support students’ academic efforts.

5. How can I get the most out of counseling?
There are many things you can do to get the most out of your experience at CAPS. We suggest first making your services at CAPS a priority. This includes regularly attending your appointments and being on time for your appointments. Be an active participant in your sessions, and communicate openly and honestly about what you are feeling. Remember to be patient with yourself and with the counseling process.

6. How do I know if I need to come to CAPS?
There are many indicators that may mean CAPS could be a resource for you, including, but not limited to:

  • You feel your emotions are intense.
  • You have experienced something you can’t stop thinking about.
  • You feel isolated.
  • Your grades are suffering because of your concerns.
  • You are using alcohol or other drugs to cope with your problems.
  • You are not eating or sleeping.
  • Your relationships are strained.
  • You are worrying all of the time.
  • Someone has expressed concern about you.

7. I need help obtaining a hardship withdrawal, will CAPS provide me with documentation?
Our clinicians may be able to provide ongoing clients with documentation in support of a hardship withdrawal. CAPS does not provide this kind of documentation to students who are not already current CAPS clients.

8. Is CAPS the only place on campus that offers mental health services?
No. Other UGA mental health resources include the Center for Counseling and Personal Evaluation, the ASPIRE Clinic, and the Psychology Clinic.

9. Is there a limit on how much counseling I can receive?
CAPS provides short-term individual and couples counseling. There is no limit to participation in CAPS group counseling or UHC sponsored #BeWellUGA workshops.

10. Someone already prescribes medication for me. Can I come to CAPS for counseling?
If you would like to begin counseling services at CAPS, and you are engaged in psychiatric services with an outside provider, you will need to transfer all of your mental health treatment to CAPS.

11. What can I expect during my initial appointment?
During the initial screening appointment we will listen to your concerns, discuss options for services, and collaborate with you on a plan which may include one or more of CAPS services or referral to services that can better meet your needs.

12. What is the difference between counseling and psychotherapy?
The terms counseling and psychotherapy have similar meanings and often are considered to be synonymous. At CAPS we tend to use these terms interchangeably.

13. What services does CAPS offer?
Read more about CAPS services.

14. What workshops does CAPS offer?
Read more about all of the workshops offered through #BeWellUGA.

15. Who provides services at CAPS?
Read more about CAPS staff.

16. Who will be my counselor?
The clinician you meet with for your screening appointment may or may not be the clinician you see for ongoing services. CAPS matches clients with clinicians based on areas of expertise as well as availability.