|The Taconic Counseling Group|
Psychologists serving Dutchess County, Putnam County, and Westchester County, New York & surrounding areas.
Appointments are available via TeleHealth, as well as in Poughkeepsie, Mt. Kisco, Scarsdale, & Manhattan
What We Do: Why The Taconic Counseling Group?
Our Fishkill, Mount Kisco, Scarsdale, and Poughkeepsie offices offer:
The Taconic Counseling Group is a private practice consisting of six New York licensed psychologists with university affiliation and postdoctoral training. We are a group of experienced practitioners who have worked in the Hudson Valley and helped people with their challenges and growth since 1975. Because we each have certain specific areas of expertise, we expand each other's range of knowledge in ways that benefit you. We guide you to the practitioner best suited to help you and, when appropriate, we confer with each other and work collaboratively. We have a weekly case conference so that all our clients can benefit from our collective skill and wisdom, taking great care to safeguard confidentiality. In these ways, each of our specialties informs your treatment or the treatment of your family.
In our work, we draw from a wide variety of treatment modalities and techniques. Some, like psychodynamic, cognitive-behavioral, relational, existential therapies, systems theory, and psychoanalysis are well established approaches. Others, like hypnosis, visualization, and EMDR, are considered more innovative techniques. It is our belief that every person and situation is unique, and we work to craft the most appropriate treatment plan for each person and circumstance. Group members also collaborate in researching and developing specialized treatment programs for trauma, marriage counseling, pre-marital counseling, divorcing families, and collaborative divorce.
Because of our training and years of experience in clinical practice, we have had the opportunity to teach, supervise, and conduct trainings for psychologists, educators, and other professionals. We know the importance of staying current with new developments in our field, and remain committed to incorporating in our practice up-to-date training in new research and techniques. This allows us to offer an increasingly wide range of services and cutting-edge alternatives.
We believe that, with the right support and resources, people can be effective in finding solutions to many of the complex emotional difficulties they face in their lives.
Maria Alba-Fisch, Ph.D. (Mount Kisco)
Elisha S. Fisch, Ph.D. (Mount Kisco)
Marsha L. Shelov, Ph.D. (Scarsdale)
Patricia G. Thomas, Ph.D. (Poughkeepsie)
Nancy J. Ulrich, Ph.D. (New York City)
Michael A. Westerman, Ph.D. (Poughkeepsie)
Areas of Expertise
Some of the areas in which we specialize:
Panic Attacks and Fears
Emotional Effects of Chronic Illness
Challenges Specific to Women
Challenges Specific to Men
Trauma and PTSD
Job Stress and Job Loss
Children and Adolescents
Attention Deficit Disorders
Learning and Developmental Differences
Anxiety, Fear, and Phobias
Adjustment to Change
Transition from High School to College
Reducing the Effects of Divorce
Marriage and Family Counseling
Counseling for Divorcing Families
Counseling for Blended Families
Resources for News, Data, & Information about COVID-19
Kaiser Family Foundation: General Health News
Kaiser Family Foundation: Specific COVID-19 News
STAT: Delivers fast, deep, and tough-minded journalism about health, medicine, life sciences and the fast-moving business of making medicines.
Johns Hopkins University & Medicine: News & Information
Johns Hopkins University & Medicine: COVID-19 Basics
Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation COVID-19 Projections
The World Health Organization
Resources for the Emotional Management of COVID-19 and Its Effects
New York Times: Marriage During the Coronavirus
Health Journeys: Guided Meditations
Joan Borysenko: Short Guided Talk with Advice
Space.com: Advice from Astronauts Who Have Been under Isolation
National Alliance on Mental Health: Coping Strategies for COVID-19
National Alliance on Mental Health: COVID-19 Guide
Child Mind Institute: For Parents: Daily Tips on Helping Children and Teens Cope with COVID-19
Dr. Andrew Weil: How To Perform the 4-7-8 Breathing Exercise
Child & Adolescent Growth and Development
The Transition from High School to College: Navigating a Challenging Passage
Are We Putting Our Children At Risk? The Negative Effects Of Too Much Programmed Play
Children and Stress: "The Hurried Child"
Children and Trauma: the Role of Parents
Pokemon: The New Pied Piper?
Temperament: Miss Or Match
The High Contact Child
Relationships and Marriage
Long Lasting And Satisfying Marriages: A Guide To Enhancing Your Relationship
Is Divorce the Right Direction for Your Marriage? A Last-Ditch High-Intensity Pre-Divorce Intervention
In Relationships: When What Comes Naturally Doesn't Work
The Case for Premarital Relationship Training
Should Your Marriage Be a Shared Life, or Do The "I"s Have It?
How Much is Your Marriage a Shared Life?
Before The Affair or After The Affair?
Preparing Children for Divorce
Reclaiming Pieces of the Self After a Divorce: Part One
Reclaiming Pieces of the Self After a Divorce: Part Two
A Program for Recovering from Divorce
Issues of Everyday Life
Are We Too Busy to Enjoy Life? Yes!
Good Guilt/Bad Guilt
How To Beat The Blues: Healthful Habits for the Relief of Depression
Men and the Psycho-Politics of Sex
Understanding and Coping with Anxiety
When the Unimaginable Happens - 9-11-01
Managing Physical Illness
Do Spouses Really Have To Talk About Serious Illness?
Psychology and Physical Illness: the Missing Link
How to Preserve Your Marriage
Collaborative Divorce and Marriage
What We Know about Psychotherapy
Phone: If you would like to inquire about us or our services, call us at 845-896-7787. Our 24-hour automated answering system will take your message 7 days a week. You will be able to leave a message in our confidential voice mail by pressing 1 at the end of the greeting. If you are interested in contacting a specific one of us, please consult the list below for the method available to contact that practitioner. To avoid delay and confusion, please reach out to ONLY one of us. We make every effort to return calls, emails, and texts within 24 hours. If you would like a call from us, please leave a day time and night time phone number. If this is an emergency, call 911 or go to your nearest emergency room.
Maria Alba-Fisch, Ph.D. 914-666-9433
Elisha Fisch, Ph.D. 914-666-9433
Marsha L. Shelov, Ph.D. 914-260-0421
Patricia G. Thomas, Ph.D. 845-896-7787 (Mailbox #5)
Nancy J. Ulrich, Ph.D. 917-545-2663
Michael A. Westerman, Ph.D. 845-896-7787 (Mailbox #7)
Offices and Driving Directions
Patricia G. Thomas, Ph.D. Nancy J. Ulrich, Ph.D. Michael A. Westerman, Ph.D. The Fishkill Office Fishkill, NY
Patricia G. Thomas, Ph.D.
The Poughkeepsie Office
3 Loockerman Avenue
Poughkeepsie, NY 12601
Maria Alba-Fisch, Ph.D.
Elisha S. Fisch, Ph.D.
The Mount Kisco Office
66 Cliffside Lane
Mount Kisco, NY 10549
Marsha L. Shelov, Ph.D.
The Scarsdale Office
115 Brite Avenue
Scarsdale, NY 10583
With the exception of Dr. Nancy Ulrich*, the members of our practice are not on insurance panels. Because we are all licensed for independent practice, our psychotherapy services** are eligible for reimbursement, if you have an out of network benefit, or your plan permits you to pick your provider and reimburses you directly for the cost of our service. We would like you to understand some of the advantages you gain by paying privately.
Advantages of Paying Privately
Protect Your Privacy: When you see an "in-network" provider, sessions are often certified for a specific number of visits. In order to negotiate for additional sessions, your therapist may need to repeatedly discuss your case with certain insurance company employees. This involves revealing detailed treatment plans and progress updates, and sometimes includes requests for your history. Once you file a claim and have a doctor submit these reports, the doctor is no longer the only one to protect the privacy of your information. Your personal medical information is available to all involved in processing your records, and to any companies and institutions that are permitted by your insurance company to have access to your records. This is one of the major reasons people prefer to pay privately and to not submit claims, even if they can. This insurance authorization process also introduces uncertainty at each juncture — regarding whether the insurance company will continue to pay for your treatment.
You Stay in Control: If you pay out of pocket, decisions as to how long you stay in therapy and what your treatment should entail are made mutually between you and your therapist. Your insurance company cannot dictate what type of treatment you should have and how long it should take.
Insurance companies have an interest in cutting their costs and their lists of providers may direct you to therapists who are not trained at the doctoral level or specifically trained for the service you seek. While some of these practitioners may be skilled and experienced, their presence on the insurance company's list does not guarantee that. Additionally, you may seek a psychologist but be given names of people who are not licensed psychologists. Finally, in our experience, provider lists are frequently outdated, and the names you are given may be of people who are no longer on this insurance panel or no longer practice in the area.
Find a Psychologist More Easily: Many people experience difficulty in finding a participating provider on their insurance panels. The reality is that this happens for several reasons: Some clinicians limit how many patients they take at the greatly reduced fees paid by insurance companies, and some may also restrict those reduced-fee patients to hours of the day that are typically harder to fill.
* Dr. Nancy Ulrich works both with clients who wish to pay privately and those who choose to use their health insurance. She has chosen to remain a participating provider with certain insurance companies because she wants to remain available to people who choose or need to use their insurance to get good care. She participates with Optimum Health, UMR, United Behavioral Health, and United Healthcare - Oxford. Dr. Ulrich is happy to discuss any of the above issues with you directly if are seeing her in treatment and use your insurance. During the coronavirus outbreak, many insurance companies are waiving copayments and deductibles as well.
** Collaborative divorce services are not considered therapy. School observations and some activities relevant to testing are not covered by many insurance policies.
What are Counseling and Psychotherapy?
How do I know if I need to see a therapist?
Do you take insurance?
Psychotherapy: how does it work?
How does it work with children?
What is play therapy? How can it help my child?
Marital Counseling: How does it work?
What is confidential, and from whom?
How long will therapy take?
Policies and Procedures
Patient Information Form
Patient Information Form - Children
Legal Agreement: Dr. Maria Alba-Fisch
Legal Agreement: Dr. Elisha S. Fisch
Legal Agreement: Dr. Martha L. Shelov
Legal Agreement: Dr. Patricia G. Thomas
Legal Agreement: Dr. Nancy J. Ulrich
Legal Agreement: Dr. Michael A. Westerman
American Psychological Association: Excellent information on psychological topics
The Collaborative Divorce Team of the Hudson Valley: A group of lawyers, divorce coaches and financial advisers dedicated to helping make divorce a less destructive process.
PsychCentral: Psychology Web Pointer is an excellent resource for almost anything you might want in psychology
EMDR Institute: Information on EMDR (eye movement desensitization and reprocessing)
Internet Mental Health: Information and links
PsycPort: A large database of psychological information
© Taconic Counseling Group 2023.