How to Set Up an Appointment
Making the call or sending an email can feel overwhelming. It can help to write yourself a script so you can remember what to say, or write an email that you can use over and over again. You can ask a loved one to help you with write, call, or send emails.
If you’re making calls, first ask if they are taking new patients. If they say no, ask if there’s a waitlist.
It may take calling or emailing a lot of places before you find an opening or a health care professional who matches your needs. It’s normal to feel discouraged, but know that help is out there.
When you call for an appointment or request one online, you will need the following information:
Type of insurance or if you're looking for a sliding-fee or hourly rate (a "sliding-fee scale" means the price you pay depends on how much money you make)
What you’re having trouble with (for example, depression, anxiety, drug use, grief)
What you want to get out of treatment (for example, coping skills, continuing to not use drugs or alcohol)
If you think you need medication, ask if they can prescribe medication
If you want telehealth or in-person visits
The days and times you can meet–if you can be available during daytime working hours, it may be easier to find appointments sooner
If you need help with transportation, ask if they have any assistance programs or public transportation nearby
If you have a disability and need accommodations, ask if they have what you need–such as a ramp, parking, braille materials, or bringing a guide dog
You can also include any questions you want to ask about the health care professional or program. These calls are confidential, so be open about any mental health, drug, or alcohol challenges you want help with.