About Thomas E. Gill, MA.NCC.LCPC
Thomas (Tom) is a graduate of York University (BA, psychology) in Toronto, Ontario and Wheaton Graduate School (MA, clinical psychology) in Wheaton Illinois. He also attended Moody Bible Institute, Chicago where he studied Bible and aviation. Tom is a National Certified Counselor and a Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor in the state of Illinois.
Tom has been in full-time private since 1996, working as an independent practitioner in Wheaton, Illinois. That experience was preceded by his work at DuPage County Department of Mental Health, where he worked for eleven years.
Tom's experience and expertise include both inpatient and outpatient addictions counseling, marital therapy, anxiety disorders, critical incident stress debriefing and intervention, conflict resolution, psychological assessments, consulting with Evangelical Christian mission agencies and providing candidate assessments, and various workshops and seminars ministering to missionaries from around the world. Tom has ministered with at least seven different mission organizations on multiple continents.
Tom utilizes what most people would recognize as a Cognitive-Behavioral approach in therapy, while constantly integrating Christian principles and including biblical references and prayer as appropriate, determined individually on a patient-by-patient basis.
Tom is a certified Highlands Ability Battery (Highlandsco.com) affiliate and uses this exceedingly valuable and effective tool extensively while working with high school and college students as well as adults who may be in a transition stage between employments, or considering such a transition.
Your First Appointment at Gill and Associates
You can arrange your first appointment easily and quickly.
Call (630) 632-4208, leave your name (please spell it as well to ensure clarity), telephone number where you are most readily available, and some possible times to best return your call. Most calls are returned within 4-6 hours. Upon call back, you will be asked a few simple questions and given your first appointment.
You do not typically need a referral to be given an initial appointment. However, be sure you check with your insurance carrier to determine if they require prior approval. Checking with your insurance carrier will also clarify for you what benefits you are entitled to, and what you can expect to be responsible for in terms of deductible amounts and co-payments.
At Gill and Associates, we accept BCBS PPO, CIGNA, AETNA, and self-pay. Other insurance carriers will cover our services at out-of-network benefit levels.
When you come to your first appointment, please bring:
- Your completed initial client information/registration form;
- Your insurance card;
- Payment (cash, credit card, or check) to cover your first session.
Notice of Privacy Practices
THIS NOTICE DESCRIBES HOW MEDICAL INFORMATION ABOUT YOU MAY BE USED AND DISCLOSED AND HOW YOU CAN GET ACCESS TO THIS INFORMATION.
PLEASE REVIEW IT CAREFULLY. THE PRIVACY OF YOUR MEDICAL INFORMATION IS IMPORTANT TO US
Our Legal Duty
Thomas Gill & Associates, PC, (TGA)
TGA is required by federal and state law to maintain the privacy of your medical information. TGA is also required to provide you with this notice about our privacy practices, our legal duties, and your rights concerning your medical information.
This notice takes effect January 1st 2021 and will remain in effect until it is revised and/or updated.
We reserve the right to change our privacy practices and the terms of this notice at any time, provided such changes are permitted under law. We reserve the right to make the changes in our privacy practices and the new terms of our notice effective for all medical information that we maintain, including medical information we created or received before we made the changes.
When changes are made to the notice, the updated document will be available to you upon request.
TGA provides its Notice of Privacy Practices to every patient with whom it has a direct treatment relationship. The Notice is provided no later than the date of first treatment to patients after January 1st 2021. When a direct treatment patient receives the Notice, TGA asks patients to sign its "Consent for Release and Use of Confidential Information and Receipt of Notice of Privacy Practices" form. You may request a copy of this notice at any time.
Using and Disclosing Your Medical Information
TGA reasonably ensures that the protected health information (PHI) it requests, uses and discloses for any purpose is the minimum amount of PHI necessary for that purpose.
TGA makes reasonable efforts to ensure that PHI is only used by and disclosed to individuals that have a right to protected health information. Toward that end, TGA makes reasonable efforts to verify the identity of those using or receiving PHI.
We must disclose your medical information to you, as described in the Individual Rights section of this notice. We may disclose your medical information to a family member, friend or other person to the extent necessary to help with your health care or with payment for your health care, but only if you agree that we may do so.
We use and disclose medical information about you for treatment, payment, and health care operations. For example:
Treatment could include consulting with or referring your case to another health care provider such as a physician, psychologist, therapist, clinic, or hospital. The type of health information that could be used or disclosed includes medical history, diagnoses, medications, or care plan pertinent to your care.
Payment means we may use and disclose your medical information to obtain payment for services provided to you.
Health care operations could include activities such as quality improvement activities, audits of billing processes, and reviewing the competence or qualifications of health care professionals, evaluating practitioner and provider performance, conducting training programs, accreditation, certification, licensing, or credentialing activities.
Uses or Disclosures We May Make Without Your Authorization
Thomas Gill & Associates uses and discloses protected health information to appropriate individuals as required by law.
The practice discloses protected health information regarding victims of abuse, neglect, or domestic violence. The practice discloses information about a minor, disabled adult, nursing home resident, or person over 60 years of age whom the practice reasonably believes to be a victim of abuse or neglect to the appropriate authorities as required by law or, if not required by law, if the individual agrees to the disclosure. This includes child abuse and neglect, elder abuse and exploitation, abused and neglected nursing home residents, or disabled adult abuse.
The practice informs the individual of the reporting unless the practice, in the exercise of professional judgment, believes informing a personal representative, and the practice believes the personal representative is responsible for the abuse, neglect or other injury and that information such person would not be in the best interests of the individual as determined by the professional judgment of the practice.
- We may also use and disclose medical information in the following manner:
- We may contact you, by phone or by mail, to provide information about treatment alternatives or other health-related services that may be of interest to you.
- We may disclose your medical information in response to a court or administrative order, or other lawful process, under certain circumstances. Under limited circumstances, such as a court order, warrant, or grand jury subpoena, we may disclose your medical information to law enforcement officials.
- We may disclose your medical information when we are required to do so by federal, state, or other applicable law. We may disclose your medical information when authorized by workers' compensation or similar laws.
- We may disclose protected health information for military and veterans activities, national security and intelligence activities, and other activities as required by law.
- We will not use or disclose your medical information if it is prohibited or materially limited by other applicable law including, but not limited to, the Illinois Nursing Home Care Act, Illinois Medical Practice Act, Illinois Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities Code, Illinois AIDS Confidentiality Act, Illinois Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities Confidentiality Act, and the Federal Drug Abuse, Prevention, Treatment and Comprehensive Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism Prevention, Treatment, and Rehabilitation Act of 1970.
More Stringent Protection for Your Health Information
In certain cases, Illinois law provides more stringent privacy protections of your health information that this Privacy Notice recites.
If you are an unemancipated minor under Illinois law, then Thomas Gill & Associates will not disclose, without your authorization, information related to your care regarding treatment abuse of drugs or alcohol or emotional disturbance to a parent, legal guardian, person standing in loco parentis or a legal custodian who has the legal authority to provide permission for your medical or psychiatric care.
Psychotherapy notes may be disclosed by your psychiatrist and/or therapist only after you have given written authorization to do so. Limited exceptions exist, e.g. to prevent you from harming yourself or others and to report abuse/neglect. All records kept at Thomas Gill & Associates are considered psychotherapy notes. You cannot be required to authorize the release of your psychotherapy records in order to obtain health-insurance benefits for your treatment, or medical information. We are not required to agree to these additional restrictions, but if we do, we will abide by our agreement (except in an emergency). Any agreement we may make to a request for additional restrictions must be in writing signed by a person authorized to make such an agreement on our behalf.
You have the right to request that we communicate with you about your medical information by alternative means or to alternative locations. You must make your request in writing. We will accommodate your request if it is reasonable, specifies the alternative means or location, and provides satisfactory explanation of how payments will be handled under the alternative means or location you request.
You have the right to request that we amend your medical information. Your request must be in writing, and it must explain why the information should be amended. We may deny your request if we did not create the information you want to be amended or for certain other reasons.
Full payment is due at time of service. Pay your provider directly upon completion of your session. (For your convenience, you may provide us with a credit card number to keep on file. Session fees will be automatically posted the next day.
Thomas Gill & Associates is contracted with Blue Cross, AETNA, and CIGNA (PPO Plans only). If you have any of these coverages, we will submit claims for you and require only your copay at the time of service. The balance, if any, will be due upon receipt of your explanation of benefits from your insurance carrier or our monthly statement.
Patients are responsible for giving us full and correct insurance information (primary and secondary—if applicable) at their first visit and immediately thereafter whenever insurance information changes. The patient will be charged if we have to resubmit claims because we were not given the correct information by the patient in a timely manner.
Policy benefits vary greatly within the Blue Cross network. Patients are responsible to become familiar with their plan and the parameters. If authorizations are required, and the patient has not arranged for them or notified the provider, the services might not be covered and the entire fee might be required from the patient. Call your insurance company before beginning a treatment plan with a new provider.
Thomas Gill & Associates is not covered by Medicare.
Every patient receives a superbill. If you are submitting to an insurance company, you can send in the superbill with a copy of your insurance card for reimbursement.
On the superbill, providers often note your next appointment. Please pay careful attention to this detail as appointments not canceled within 24 hours of appointment time are charged to the patient at the session price.
CARE COORDINATION SERVICES
Depending on your specific needs, your therapist may spend significant time outside of office visits managing your care. These duties may include reviewing school, hospital, or lab records, talking with outside therapists or doctors, completing forms for disability, schools, and health or prescription insurance authorizations, generating letters and filling out reports, filling prescriptions or answering questions about medications, communicating with extended family, hospitals or agencies involved in your care, etc. The needs of children, teens, and the elderly are especially time-intensive.
All of these duties are essential to taking excellent care of you.
Since our therapists are spending increasing amounts of time on these matters you may receive a charge from time to time for "care management." The charge may come at the time of a specific task, or be generated for multiple tasks over a six to twelve-month period. "Care Management" charges (billed with American Medical Association approved codes on insurance claims) may be reimbursed by some, but not all, insurance companies.
If you have any questions, please bring them to your therapist.
Thomas Gill & Associates recognizes that life-threatening circumstances require immediate action. Sometimes that creates serious financial problems. We want to be sensitive to these situations and will work out a payment plan that clears balances in six months to a year, provided payment agreements are carefully adhered to. To qualify for any special payment arrangements, the responsible party must meet with our billing office and present evidence to justify their financial need. This is required by law because pricing must be consistent and fair to all.
We work with patients that work with us in a timely manner. Account balances older than 90 days, with no reported communication from the responsible party, are turned over to our collection agency and a collection service fee is assessed and your credit history may be impacted.
OFFICE POLICY AND INFORMED CONSENT
The laws of the State of Illinois require that most issues discussed during the course of therapy with a psychotherapist are confidential. These laws permit you to waive the privilege of confidentiality by signing a “Release of Information Form”. However, the release of confidential materials is required in situations of suspected child abuse, of potential harm to oneself or others, and in instances where the court may subpoena records. During the course of your therapy, you may request that some information be discussed with another person (ie. your physician, spouse/partner, children, parents, etc.) If you desire that information be communicated about you to someone else, please ask for a “Release of Information Form”. If we feel that it will be useful to you during the course of your therapy, to discuss your progress or situation with another person (i.e. your physician), your therapist will request your written permission to do so and would not release that information without such written permission.
Therapy sessions will typically be on a weekly or bi-weekly basis. Additional appointment times can be arranged with your therapist. A therapy “hour” is 45 minutes in duration and is referred to a “clinical hour”.
Cancellations and Missed Appointments:
It is requested that you provide advance notice of cancellation at least 24 hours before a scheduled appointment. If a cancellation has not been made prior to this time, the session is a loss for someone else wishing to use that therapy time. A scheduled appointment means that it will be held only for you and, therefore, cannot be used by another person. Late cancellations, or appointments not canceled, will be billed as a “failed appointment”. Failed appointments will be billed at your regular session feel. Most insurance companies do not cover failed appointments, resulting in the client themselves being solely responsible for any such charges. If you are late, the session will still end at the scheduled end time.
Children in the Waiting Room:
We are unable to provide supervision for children in the waiting room and cannot accept responsibility for their safety if left unattended. For the safety and welfare of the children, as well as consideration for other clients and staff, please make other arrangements for childcare during therapy sessions. Parents who do not comply will risk the cancellation of their designated appointment. Parents will be held responsible for any property damage caused by their child.
Fees are not charged for phone calls to therapists regarding appointments and similar matters. As well, fees are not charged for phone calls requiring just a few minutes. However, a pro-rated charge will be made for psychotherapy or psychotherapeutic consultations conducted over the phone that require more than 5 minutes. This would be billed at the same rate as face-to-face sessions. Phone calls may be made from our offices for emergencies.
You will be billed for all time spent with you or on your behalf, including the therapist’s time spent preparing reports, reading letters or other documents, consultations, travel time for “out of office” services, and telephone calls. A list of all clinical fees is available by request. Payment is requested at the time of each session either by cash, check or charge card. Each client remains responsible for any fees not covered by insurance carriers.
If you maintain health insurance, part of your therapy expenses may be covered through that insurance. In the case of Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Illinois, PPO, or other insurance companies with whom we have a contractual agreement, however, we will honor the amount BCBSIL writes-off, and will only charge the responsible party the co-pay and deductible amount.
In the event that a check given for payment of your account is returned by your bank, a charge of $50.00 will be added to your account.
Payments not made within one (1) month of the billing date will be considered late and the account charged a fee of 12% the outstanding balance. Further delinquent accounts may be sent to collections. This is typically not done unless the account is seriously overdue by 90 days. Be aware that the adult who contracts the counseling services by signing this policy and informed consent, is solely responsible for all incurred fees. A third party may be billed with their consent. If the third party does not cover the expense as outlined above, then the responsibility for payment defaults to the contracting adult.
Ethical and Professional Standards:
As professional and licensed therapists, we work diligently to uphold the most responsible, ethical and professional standards possible, and we are accountable to you. If you have any questions or concerns about your course of contact with us, please feel free to discuss these issues with us. In signing this contract you are agreeing that should you have any dissatisfaction or concern about your treatment, you will do your best to indicate your concerns to us so we can attempt to address them to your satisfaction. If you are unhappy with your services here and need help finding additional or alternative resources, we will assist you in locating a more suitable referral source.
Illinois Law for Mandated Reporting:
If information is revealed in your treatment regarding potential harm to minors or serious threat of harm to yourself or others, your therapist is required by law to report this information to the proper authorities.
Therapy May be Upsetting:
You need to be aware that engaging in psychotherapy may involve experiencing uncomfortable past traumatic events, difficult intense emotions such as depression, anger, grief, confusion or anxiety. It may also result in changes in your life that could be difficult to face. Your therapist will discuss these situations with you if they come up in the course of therapy.
You can end therapy at any point you wish. Ending therapy is an important aspect to a successful therapeutic experience. Usually therapy pursues specific goals that you and your therapist will discuss together, including an appropriate termination process. If you decide you need to terminate your treatment prematurely, please discuss this with your therapist. Your therapist will also discuss with you if they conclude that the therapeutic process is not benefiting you. In the case where you do not discuss the termination with your therapist and have outstanding appointments scheduled, please be aware that you will be charged the set fee for the un-canceled appointment(s).