Mental Health/Cognitive Assessments

Adult Mental Health and/or Cognitive Assessments for Adults involved with Child Protection Services or M’ikmaw Family and Children’s Services of Nova Scotia
Who do we work with?

Our mental health and/or cognitive assessments are provided for parents involved with child protection services through community organizations such as the Nova Scotia Department of Community Services – Family and Children Services Division, as well as the M’ikmaw Family and Children’s Services of Nova Scotia. These assessments are typically requested through the agency because an individual has been experiencing difficulty in their functioning as a parent and/or has not responded well to agency services that have been provided (e.g., Family Support Work, counselling, etc.). Clients that we serve have often experienced trauma (e.g., domestic violence), have experienced challenges with learning (e.g., learning disability, intellectual disability) and/or have a significant mental health condition (e.g., bipolar disorder, major depressive disorder).

What Do We Do?

These assessments evaluate an individual’s cognitive and academic abilities. Depending on the individual the following abilities may be assessed:

  • Intellectual Functioning
  • Verbal and visual reasoning
  • Working memory
  • Processing speed
  • Reading, writing, math
  • Visual-motor skills
  • Memory
  • Executive Functions
  • Attention

These assessments also evaluate an individual’s current mental health functioning. We routinely review diagnostic criteria for the following disorders using validated and standardized measures such as the Structured Clinical Interview for Diagnosis (SCID-5):

  • Mood Disorders
  • Anxiety Disorders
  • Substance Use Disorders
  • Psychotic Disorders
  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
  • Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
  • Maladaptive Personality Patterns

Additional disorders and personality traits/patterns may be reviewed depending on the individual.

An adult mental health and/or cognitive assessment report for parenting:
  • Reviews background information provided by the Department of Community Services regarding the individual’s history with the child protection services and any other relevant documentation (e.g., medical records, previous parental capacity assessments, previous psychoeducational assessments, etc.).
  • Describes strengths and weaknesses of the individual’s cognitive functioning and academic skills
  • Provides mental health diagnoses and describes additional mental health challenges that may not meet diagnostic criteria.
  • Reviews the implications of these deficits, diagnoses and challenges on the individual’s daily functioning and parenting ability.
  • Provides recommendations and strategies for case management and/or treatment
What does the assessment consist of?
  • Cognitive assessment consists of one-on-one testing with the client and the psychologist or psychometrist for a full day and Mental health assessment consists of testing and interviewing with two psychologists for a full day. Clients that require both cognitive and mental health assessment are generally scheduled for one and a half days.
  • Comprehensive written report that includes test results, diagnostic findings and recommendations.
  • Feedback as appropriate with the client and referral source.
What does It Cost?

Cognitive Assessment to assess if the client has cognitive limitations that may impact parenting: $2800.00-$3570.00

Mental Health Assessment to assess if the client has mental health problems that may be impacting parenting: $2800.00-$3570.00

Cognitive + Mental Health Assessment: $4000.00-$5100.00

Substantial Background Review: $510.00 (6 hours x $85.00/hour)
To review extensive amounts of background files (e.g., many years of CPS case recordings and court proceedings, medical files, out-of-province child protection files, mental health or counselling notes, etc.) we may charge up to an additional 6 hours of time. The psychologist will discuss the potential for additional billing with the social worker managing the case once the background documents for review are received.

No-Show Policy – If the client doesn’t show up on the day of the assessment without notice, the psychologist may choose to invoice part of the assessment cost that day, as we generally spend significant amounts of time before the client arrives reviewing the background documents and preparing for the assessment. The rest of the cost would be billed at the time of the report.

Cancellation Policy -Please note that we require a week’s notice to cancel these assessments.

All mental health and/or cognitive assessments for parenting are conducted by our psychologists who are registered with Policy 75.