Hi Brandon. Manda suggested that I get in touch with you. I’m looking to interview someone who has had trouble with access to psychological counselling services either because they couldn’t afford it or their work insurance did not cover it. Would you be open to it? Also, would you be comfortable if I use your full name?
Me- Yes I’d be up to it. And you may use my full name. Brandon Foster.

how would you prefer we do the interview? By phone or some way else?

Me- Electronic because my phone anxiety is a killer. We can email. Skype, IM, or DM on here.
ok, here is fine, but I’ll say it was by email. First, where are you from, how old are you?

Me- Bridgwater ,NS born and raised. Living in Dartmouth. I am 30 years young.

Young. I like that. OK, so you mentioned anxiety. Is that why you were seeking counselling, or other issues?

Me -Other issues. Seeking counseling for my severe clinical depression and hallucinations.

Do you work?

Me-Anxiety is Depression’s tag team partner with most people. Currently on medical leave. Still employed

what do you do?

Me- Working at a call center here in Dartmouth, in Burnside.

OK. So did you had trouble finding a psychologist?

Me- Yes. The demand is high for them, and there surprisingly few of them here in this province. In NS, the average wait time can be upwards of 9 months. I waited close to four months and I was marked urgent by my family doctor.

did your work insurance cover it or did you have to pay out of pocket?
Me-My work benefits had expired. I had to apply for the free mental health services through capital health (NSHA) .

OK. How did you feel during those 4 months? Were you getting upset or frustrated at the long wait?

Me- Definitely. As time progressed my mental health continued to deteriorate. My doctor also frustrated put 4 request for urgent help. Perhaps had I gotten help sooner I may have fully recovered by now.

when was this 4 month wait. was it recently?

Me- This would have been early 2015 . With recent budget cuts to mental health programs here I can’t see it being any better now.

And you feel that if you hadn’t waited so long you would not be on medical leave right now?
Me- Exactly. We could have nipped it in the butt so to speak at the early stages before things got so far out of control for me mentally.

ok, final question. In your opinion, how could access to psychologists be improved in Nova Scotia
Me- Perhaps offer them a reason to come here to help the one’s already here. The demand has become too great for the ones here. Not sure what you could offer. Pay raises, tax relief, a free coffee mug. But there needs to be an influx of phycologists to this province.