FAQs

If you are experiencing an emergency, please call 911 or go to your nearest emergency room.

After Hours Mobile Crisis Resources (not affiliated with AEAP):
Adults/Children/Adolescents: Northern Rivers 518.292.5499
Adults in Crisis (Albany County) Mental Health Mobile Crisis: 518.549.6500
 
Suicide and Crisis Hotline: 988

Haven Oaks is a working farm and we are a mental health therapy practice. For your safety and the privacy of all of our clients, please do not come to the farm without a therapy appointment, wander the farm, or bring guests to therapy sessions.

Where are you located?

We offer in-person therapy at our offices, located at Haven Oaks Farm 46 Reynolds Rd. Fort Edward, NY 12828. We offer remote therapy by phone and video to residents of New York State.

Where is the reception area?

Clients are welcome at the farm for their scheduled sessions. Please wait in your car until it is time for your session to begin. Follow the signs from the parking lot through the large gate. Take a right at the end of the first barn. You’ll see the sign for the reception area on the door. Please ring the doorbell and your therapist will be right with you. Please note that we do not answer the door until it is time for session to begin.

Clients who are at the farm for sessions with Shannon or Gretchen can go to the office with the green door attached to the house at the time of session. If no one is in the office, please wait outside until we come up from the barn.

What kind of therapy do you offer? Do you work with adults? Children?

We offer in-person therapy, office-based therapy, walk-and-talk sessions on the farm, equine assisted psychotherapy (if appropriate), and remote therapy by phone or video for adults and children ages 8+.

What are your hours?

We offer in-person and remote therapy sessions Monday through Friday 8:30a-4:30p. Remote therapy sessions are also offered on evenings and weekends.

Contact information:

If you are experiencing an emergency, please call 911 or go to your nearest emergency room.

Olivia R. and Jenn C., Administrative Assistants – Referrals and general questions:

Email: Assistant@AdirondackEAP.com

Call: (518) 573-0239

Fax: (518) 747-2194

Billing Department – All billing questions:

Email: Billing@AdirondackEAP.com

Shannon Brock, LCSWR, Director/Therapist:

Email: Shannon@AdirondackEAP.com

Video Telehealth link: doxy.me/adkeap

Emily Sherman, LMSW, On-Site Therapist

Email: EmilyS@AdirondackEAP.com

Video Telehealth link: doxy.me/EmilyShermanAEAP

Jenn Smith, LMSW, On-Site Therapist

Email: Jenn@AdirondackEAP.com

Video Telehealth link: doxy.me/JennAEAP

Laurel Green, LMSW, On-Site Therapist

Email: Laurel@AdirondackEAP.com

Video Telehealth link: doxy.me/LaurelAEAP

Gretchen Roesch, LMSW, On-Site Therapist

Email: Gretchen@AdirondackEAP.com

Video Telehealth link: doxy.me/GretchenAEAP

Katy Green, LMSW, On-Site Therapist

Email: Katy@AdirondackEAP.com

Video Telehealth link: doxy.me/KatyGreenAEAP

Shannon Lynch, LMSW, Remote Therapist

Email: ShannonLynch@AdirondackEAP.com

Video Telehealth link: doxy.me/ShannonLynchAEAP

Kayla Wilson, LCSW, PMH-C, Remote Therapist

Email: Kayla@AdirondackEAP.com

Video telehealth link: doxy.me/KaylaAEAP

Gabby Gockel, LMSW, Remote Therapist

Email: Gabby@AdirondackEAP.com

Video telehealth link: doxy.me/GabbyAEAP

Desiree Mather, LMSW, Remote Therapist

Email: Desiree@AdirondackEAP.com

Video telehealth link: doxy.me/DesireeAEAP

Melissa Collins, LMSW, Remote Therapist

Email: Melissa@AdirondackEAP.com

Video Telehealth link: doxy.me/MelissaAEAP

Kara Bax, LMSW, Remote Therapist

Email: Kara@AdirondackEAP.com

Video Telehealth link: doxy.me/KaraAEAP

Jacqueline Suarez, LMSW, Remote Therapist

Email: Jacqueline@AdirondackEAP.com

Video Telehealth link: doxy.me/JacquelineAEAP

Emily Wesoloski, LMSW, Remote Therapist

Email: Emily@AdirondackEAP.com

Video Telehealth link: doxy.me/EmilyAEAP

Melanie Keem, LMSW, Remote Therapist

Email: Melanie@AdirondackEAP.com

Video Telehealth link: doxy.me/MelanieAEAP

Abigail Johnson, LMSW, Remote Therapist

Email: Abby@AdirondackEAP.com

Video Telehealth link: doxy.me/AbbyAEAP

Kayla Annett, LMSW, Remote Therapist

Email: KaylaAnnett@AdirondackEAP.com

Video Telehealth link: doxy.me/KaylaAnnettAEAP

Emily Stern, LMSW, Remote Therapist

Email: EmilyStern@AdirondackEAP.com

Video Telehealth link: doxy.me/EmilySternAEAP

Anneka Vanderveen, LMSW, Remote Therapist

Email: Anneka@AdirondackEAP.com

Video Telehealth link: doxy.me/AnnekaAEAP

Katie Cresci, LMSW, Remote Therapist

Email: Katie@AdirondackEAP.com

Video Telehealth link: doxy.me/KatieAEAP

Sue and Jim Hooper, Haven Oaks Farm Owners

Email: HavenOaksFarm@gmail.com

Call/Text Sue (DO NOT call with AEAP questions or business): (518) 852-6345

Link to Patient Portal (for current clients ONLY):

https://adirondackeap.janeapp.com/

What is Equine Assisted Psychotherapy?

Equine therapy is mental health therapy, and therefore, anyone with mental health concerns may benefit.

We work with adults and children ages 8+. Insurances accepted are listed below.

Please click on the Our Model tab for more detailed information about equine assisted psychotherapy.

Equine Assisted Psychotherapy is provided by a licensed therapist with the assistance of horses. Our licensed therapists partner with horses to engage the client in real-life, real-time experiences designed to provide unique, effective therapeutic benefits.

We also offer office-based therapy, walk-and-talks on the farm, and remote therapy by phone and video.

Do I have to work with horses? Am I guaranteed to work one-on-one with horses?

No, we do not require anyone to interact with horses, nor do we guarantee that every client will have equine assisted psychotherapy incorporated into their individual treatment plan.

What is the admissions process?

Referrals are appreciated, but not required.

Providers may submit a referral form or clients can self-refer.

Self-referred clients should reach out via email to Assistant@adirondackeap.com to get started.

We will first ask a few preliminary questions. Following that, we will run your insurance to verify your coverage and benefits*. Once that’s done, we require intake paperwork to be completed on our patient portal. The information is reviewed by the Director and, if we accept the client, a therapist will be assigned and an intake session will be offered. Admission is not guaranteed, nor is it guaranteed that clients will work one-on-one with the horses.

*Insurance Disclaimer: A quote of benefits and/or authorization does not guarantee payment or verify eligibility. Payment of benefits are subject to all terms, conditions, limitations, and exclusions of the member’s contract at the time of service. Any and all services not covered by an individual’s insurance are required to be paid by the individual to whom services are rendered. We highly recommend that individuals reach out to their insurance company to independently verify their coverage for outpatient mental health therapy in a provider’s office.

Do you accept insurance?

We currently accept most plans through the following insurance carriers*:

  • Fidelis
  • Aetna
  • Managed Medicaid plans through Fidelis, CDPHP, MVP, Highmark, etc.
  • Empire BC/BS
  • Anthem BC/BS
  • Excellus BC/BS
  • Nationwide BC/BS plans
  • CDPHP
  • MVP
  • Highmark
  • BlueShield of NENY
  • Cigna/Evernorth
  • Carelon/NYSHIP/Empire Plan – currently, we are out-of-network but bill directly. Out-of-network benefits are typically excellent. Potential clients need to confirm their out-of-network benefits with Carelon directly.
  • Clients claiming on their out-of-network benefits

*Not all therapists are able to accept all insurances.

This list is subject to change. If we do not accept your insurance, see below for tips on how to advocate with your insurance company for out-of-network benefits.

Insurance Disclaimer: A quote of benefits and/or authorization does not guarantee payment or verify eligibility. Payment of benefits are subject to all terms, conditions, limitations, and exclusions of the member’s contract at the time of service. Any and all services not covered by an individual’s insurance are required to be paid by the individual to whom services are rendered. We highly recommend that individuals reach out to their insurance company to independently verify their coverage for outpatient mental health therapy in a provider’s office and/or telehealth.

Will insurance cover therapy at AEAP if I also see another therapist at another practice?

Typically, yes. Please contact your insurance company to verify your specific coverage and benefits for outpatient mental health therapy.

How do I support the Inherit the Gold Foundation?

The Inherit the Gold Foundation is a registered 501(c)3 nonprofit organization helping horses and people.

The foundations rescues, retrains, and rehomes race horses, and also provides scholarships to Adirondack Equine Assisted Psychotherapy for under- or uninsured individuals. You can make a tax deductible donation or apply to be considered for the Equine Therapy Scholarship at www.InheritTheGold.org.

You can also visit the Adirondack EAP store and the Inherit the Gold Foundation store for cool merchandise. All proceeds benefit the Inherit the Gold Foundation!

Do you take volunteers/interns?

We do not currently take volunteers or interns. If that changes, we will announce it on our Facebook page. We recommend reaching out to Nipper Knolls therapeutic riding or Old Friends at Cabin Creek for volunteer opportunities.

Can I come visit the farm? Do you allow trial therapy sessions?

No, please do not come to the farm without an express invitation or a therapy appointment. The farm is private, and we do not allow visitors.

We do occasionally host open houses and group tours. Any opportunities to visit the farm will be posted on the Facebook page. If you’d like to try therapy, please contact administrative assistant at Assistant@AdirondackEAP.com to complete the intake process. Once you’re set up as a client, you’ll be able to engage in an intake session and preliminary session to decide if your therapist is a good fit for you.

Do you offer free consultations?

Due to HIPAA regulations, we are unable to provide therapy sessions or consultations without the individual completing the intake process first. Please contact us at Assistant@AdirondackEAP.com to get started!

Do you provide medication management?

We provide outpatient mental health therapy only. We do not provide medication management. We recommend reaching out to BHSN in Queensbury or New York Child Psychiatry in Saratoga Springs.

Can I bring friends/family members to my therapy session?

Our policy is that if it would be therapeutically beneficial for a client to include another person in their office-based therapy and the client has discussed this with their therapist ahead of time, they are welcome at the farm. Otherwise, it’s important that therapy sessions remain focused on the goals and objectives of the indicated client and guests should not attend.

Are sessions private?

Haven Oaks is a working farm, as well as a therapeutic farm, so there will often be staff and other therapists around the barn. We work hard to maintain your privacy by giving you plenty of space, so in general, we will not approach you while you are on the farm (unless you look like you need our help). We understand that everyone has varying levels of comfort with socialization, and that therapy is a sacred space. We are usually working or with another client if you see us on the farm, so feel free to wave if you’d like, and understand if we can’t stop to chat.

What kind of therapy do you offer?

We offer in-person sessions for both equine therapy, office-based therapy, and outdoor walk-and-talk therapy, as well as remote telehealth sessions.

Can I sit in on a session to see if I like it? Can I stop by and check the place out?

No, please do not come to the farm uninvited. Therapy is private, and is protected by HIPAA, a federal law ensuring privacy for medical clients. Observing a therapy session is strictly forbidden. The farm is private, and we diligently protect the safety, privacy, and well-being of all of our clients and animals.

How can I start my own equine therapy business? Can I interview you for my class/project/etc? Will you complete a survey, etc?

Equine assisted psychotherapy is provided by licensed, board-certified mental health therapists who specialize in equine assisted psychotherapy. We regularly receive an extremely high volume of calls and emails asking for consultation/business tips/interviews for various classes, etc. Unfortunately, we are no longer able to invest the amount of time and energy that it would take to continue to provide the level of complementary, individualized attention that we have freely offered in the past.

We highly recommend Shannon Knapp’s books, More than a Mirror and Horse Sense, Business Sense, as well as trainings, consultations, and other valuable information from the Natural Lifemanship Institute. If you’d like to set up a time to meet with our Director, Shannon Brock, LCSWR, via video, we’d be happy to facilitate getting that scheduled. Consultation fees are $250/50-minute video meeting and are due at the time of booking.

What makes Adirondack Equine Assisted Psychotherapy, LCSW, different from other therapy?

At Adirondack EAP, a licensed mental health therapist with many years of education and clinical experience teams with horses to provide a unique, effective counseling experience to children, adults, and families.

While horses are inherently therapeutic, it is vital that mental health therapy be provided by a trained and board-certified (human) clinician, and that equine assisted psychotherapy be provided by a licensed therapist who is additionally trained and specializes in EAP.

How do I get a referral?

You can contact our offices directly via email at Assistant@adirondackeap.com. Some insurance companies require a physician’s referral in order to consider reimbursement for services, so please be informed about the requirements of your specific policy.

In the case of a physician or provider referral, please direct them to the Referral Forms. A release of information will be expected from any referring agency to ensure HIPAA compliance.

What is the cost of sessions?

We currently accept most plans through the following insurance carriers:

  • BlueShield of Northeastern New York
  • Lifetime Benefit Solutions
  • Fidelis
  • Aetna
  • HighMark (formerly BlueShield of Northeastern NY)
  • CDPHP
  • MVP
  • Cigna/Evernorth
  • Empire BC/BS
  • Anthem BC/BS
  • Excellus BC/BS
  • Carelon
  • Carelon/NYSHIP/Empire Plan – currently, we are out-of-network but bill directly. Out-of-network benefits are typically excellent. Potential clients need to confirm their out-of-network benefits with Carelon directly.
  • Clients claiming on their out-of-network benefits

Insurance coverage varies according to clients’ individual policies. If a client has an insurance that we don’t accept, many policies include some coverage for therapy provided by an out-of-network provider. Please read below for assistance with this process.

The Inherit The Gold Foundation provides assistance to individuals who are uninsured or under-insured. Please contact them directly to apply for consideration for this scholarships.

What can I expect in sessions? How often do you meet? Do you operate in the winter? What is your scheduling availability?

Engagement with the therapist is always the priority. Sessions alone with the therapist will occur until the therapist determines that adding equine therapy into the treatment plan would be beneficial to the client’s treatment goals. Not all clients will work one-on-one with the horses.

Our work with the horses will be on the ground, in specific exercises designed to maximize the therapeutic experience for the client and support attaining goals outlined in his or her individual treatment plan.

There may be instances where a client or a client’s treatment plan or individual session requires more of a traditional office-based setting or via remote telehealth, and interaction with the horses will not occur. Communication with the client and their family will be ongoing so that everyone knows what to expect.

We typically meet on a weekly basis, although individual clients may have different needs. In-person sessions are held Monday through Friday from 8:30a to 4:30p. Some of our remote-only clinicians offer remote therapy on evenings and weekends.

We operate year-round, with accommodations made for severe weather that may include briefly transitioning to telehealth and/or office-based therapy sessions.

Telehealth and office-based sessions are offered in addition to in-person sessions at any time, if a client is already paired with an in-person therapist.

Do you offer remote telehealth sessions?

Telehealth sessions are available at any time. If a client would like to switch from an in-person session to a telehealth session, they can do so at any time, as long as they inform their therapist in advance. On-site therapists offer in-person and remote therapy on weekdays from 8:30a-4:30p. Remote-only therapists also offer telehealth on evenings and weekends. Please note that some insurances offer different coverage for in-person vs remote therapy. Please be aware of the coverage and benefits of your individual insurance policy.

Will we ride horses in session?

Clients for whom equine therapy is included in their treatment plan will not ride the horses. All EAP takes place on the ground.

What should I wear for sessions?

Please dress to be outside, protect your feet, and wear something you don’t mind getting dirty. When you’re interacting with live animals, there is always the chance for getting mud, dust, and horse hair on your clothes and shoes, so please dress accordingly. Wear closed-toed, closed-back, sturdy shoes. Boots with a slight heel are preferable but not required unless you are riding. Crocs, flip flops, ballet flats, and any other light footwear is not allowed. Feel free to wear rain coats, hats, snow suits, etc, for your comfort in all weather.

Do you operate in the winter? Are sessions held outside?

We operate year round. Accommodations are made for the health and safety of our horses, clinicians, barn staff, and clients in the event of severe weather. This may include a brief transition to telehealth and/or office-based therapy sessions, as appropriate. We do hold sessions outside, either in the barn or out in the open.

I am concerned about confidentiality. Will there be other people getting therapy at the same time as me?

Privacy and confidentiality are part of our client agreement, and are expected from every client. Your session is private, although you may see other clients, farm staff, or clinicians while you are at the farm. We make every effort to keep everyone feeling safe and supported, so if you have a concern, please bring it to the attention of your clinician or the clinical director.

Will I have to wear a helmet?

We require helmets for everyone under age 18 during the entire time that they are on the farm. We provide helmets. Clients over age 18 can choose to wear helmets during ground work. Helmets are required for everyone during all mounted work.

Do I need to buy my own helmet?

You are welcome to purchase your own helmet. We provide helmets. All helmets must meet ASTM / SEI certified equestrian standards.

What happens if there is bad weather?

Safety is our number one priority, so in the case of severe weather, we may switch to telehealth or office-based therapy sessions. We will let you know if this is happening, so please check your email and/or reach out to us if you have questions or concerns. We welcome anyone who does not wish to travel for an in-person session to transition to telehealth by phone or video.

What if I’m allergic to horses or have medical concerns?

We do not have medical staff on the premises so please consult your physician about whether you can safely participate in equine assisted psychotherapy.

I don’t know anything about horses and I’m afraid of them. Can I still participate in EAP?

Yes! Prior horse experience is not at all required. Being nervous or scared about being around horses can actually provide a great starting place for progress in therapy. We will work together to help you with this.

I want to take riding lessons/learn horsemanship. Should I do EAP instead?

EAP is not riding lessons, nor do all clients have direct contact with the horses. If you are looking for riding lessons, there are many excellent riding facilities in the area. Some options are North Country Horses and Vertical Farms.

Do you offer Therapeutic Riding?

We offer mental health therapy, that may include equine assisted psychotherapy. We do not offer Therapeutic Riding. We recommend reaching out to Nipper Knolls for therapeutic riding.

I have a lot of experience with horses. Can I get anything out of EAP?

We offer mental health therapy and we interact with horses in a way that you are not likely to have experienced before and will be engaging in exercises that will allow you to interact with the horses in a unique and therapeutic fashion.

You don’t accept my insurance. How do I advocate for myself with my insurance company to get out-of-network coverage?

It is important that you understand the rights and benefits of your individual health plan. There is a wide variety of coverage scope throughout the industry and aspects of your policy may vary from others who have insurance, even if it is with the same company. Please remember that if you determine an out-of-network direct reimbursement rate and plan with your insurance company, this is between you and that company.  We do not have the staff to negotiate with insurance companies on your behalf so if you wish to utilize out-of-network benefits, please contact your insurance company to ask about coverage and benefits for outpatient mental health in an out-of-network provider’s office. We direct bill several insurance companies, including Beacon Health/Carelon and Optum, with whom we are out-of-network. Otherwise, we can provide you with a Superbill for direct billing.

Here are some tips to help you navigate the system.

  • Most insurance cards will have a customer service number on the card. Please contact them BEFORE you start therapy so that you are well informed. Be aware that mental health benefits can vary from medical benefits. Have the insurance company send you written confirmation of any agreements made and bring them to your first session.
  • When you call, make sure you have paper and pen to take notes about which number you called, who you spoke with, their direct line and extension and what they said. Record the time and date that you called, so that if there is ever a problem, you have good records. It can also make it easier when you have to call back if you write down the “option” numbers so that you can enter them more quickly next time.
  • Ask to speak with someone about coverage for mental health (some insurers call it “behavioral health” or “psychotherapy”) benefits. You are not asking about coverage for equine therapy. That is a model of therapy, not a billing code.
  • Explain that you wish to receive mental health therapy from an out-of-network provider and ask them what they will do about reimbursing you directly.  If you need our NPI number or CPT codes that we use, please contact me directly.
  • Request written requirements for clinical information that your insurer will require for reimbursement. We can provide a Superbill upon request.
  • Ask if an “out-of-network” benefit exists on your plan.
  • Make sure you write down the person you are speaking with and their direct call back information
  • If you have trouble or feel you are entitled to further information or coverage, feel free to ask for a supervisor.
  • Your insurance company is in the business of making the consumer happy. Be persistent!
  • If you receive your insurance through an employer, the Human Resources department may be helpful with negotiating services through your insurance carrier. The insurance carrier wants to keep your employer happy so they continue to use them for insurance and your employer wants to have happy and healthy employees, so both will likely be motivated to see you satisfied.
  • When they ask you why you do not want to use other services, let them know if your doctor has specifically recommended you to AEAP. Explain that equine assisted psychotherapy is unique, effective, and offers experiential therapy which has yielded promising results in many scientific studies.
  • Ask questions, explore option and request reviews of decisions if at first you do not get the outcome you’re seeking.