In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Dr. Rafferty is currently seeing all clients via telehealth. Current clients- check your email for further information.Please contact Clinical Associates of the Southern Tier at 607.936.1771 to learn more.
Dr. Sonya E. Rafferty, NPP, LMHC
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, Licensed Mental Health Counselor
Dr. Sonya E. Rafferty, NPP, LMHC is a board certified Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner and a Licensed Mental Health Counselor. She earned her Bachelor of Art degree in Psychology from Fredonia State University in 2000 and her Master of Science in Counseling from the University at Albany. She enjoyed being a therapist for children, families, and adults in a community mental health clinic while she went back to school for nursing. She earned her Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Elmira College, her Master of Science in Nursing from Stony Brook University, and her Doctorate of Nursing Practice from Columbia University in New York City.
Dr. Rafferty has a small private practice office in Ithaca, NY. She specializes in mental health treatment for children, families, and adults using a well rounded approach that includes therapy, coaching, support systems, and medication management to help her clients achieve mental well being. Her approach to treatment can help alleviate symptoms of depression, anxiety, mood swings, ADHD, and behavioral issues.
If this personalized approach and positive style of treatment seem like they might be a good fit for you, please contact Dr. Rafferty’s office to inquire about scheduling an appointment.
If you are a current client with a scheduled appointment please use this link to check in for your telehealth appointment. If you would like to schedule an appointment please call Clinical Associates of the Southerntier at 607.936.1771.
You are not just a mental health diagnosis. You are a whole person with many roles, dreams, challenges, successes, and goals. Dr. Rafferty believes that your whole self must be acknowledged and cared for in order to achieve a healthy state of being. She will never just give you medicine and send you on your way. She will take the time to get to know you and ensure your treatment reflects that.
Ever go to a doctor’s office, wait an hour to be seen, and then get 5 minutes to rush through your list of concerns and questions? Dr. Rafferty offers a variety of appointment lengths to make sure that you have all the time you need to get full and well-rounded care.
Your health is of the utmost importance and Dr. Rafferty respects that. By working with you she will help you to develop a personalized treatment plan that is designed especially for you. She will help you to choose a treatment goal that is right for you and then help you every step of the way toward that goal.
Changed my life
“Working with Sonya has totally changed my life for the better. I have had to work hard, but with constant and unwavering support, I’ve become stable, productive, and have found effective therapy to push myself even further. I trust her and have hope for myself because of Sonya.”
“Great ideas to improve hyperactivity in school and at home. She really knows us as a family and is incredibly helpful! We enjoy working with her and have for over 7 years! Results of working with Sonya- decreased hyperactivity, increased sleep, increased attention, happier child and family and school.”
Alternatives besides just medications
“Sonya has been very helpful, I have seen an improvement in [my son’s] mood. She is very knowledgeable about psychiatric conditions. [My son] really enjoys talking to her.”
“Sonya is nice to talk to, explains everything completely, I enjoy seeing her.”
“Sonya helped me get medication that made my depression and anxiety much more bearable, she helped me start to be myself again. She knew what she could do to help and did it right away.”
I am now a rockstar at my job
“Sonya is very real and genuine. She listens, asks great questions, and is very careful choosing her words. She is thorough and accurate when determining what your needs are and is always taking “the temperature” to assess where I am in the process. She has helped me immensely in my personal and professional life.”
Call 911 or immediately report to the nearest emergency department if you are experiencing a significant mental health crisis such as acute suicidality or homicidality, mania, decompensated psychosis, etc.
Please call Dr. Rafferty (or have a friend or family member call her) to let her know if you have either been hospitalized or seen in the emergency department for psychiatric reasons.
What to Expect at Your First Appointment
Dr. Rafferty knows that connecting with a mental health provider can be a challenging endeavor. It is important that you feel there is a good fit between you and your provider. Dr. Rafferty is truly interested in getting to know you and will spend the right amount of time with you so you are heard.
An initial evaluation typically takes 60 minutes to complete, depending on your personal needs. The goal of this first evaluation is to offer the highest level of care possible and a full hour allows time for all of your mental health needs to be addressed and questions to be answered. Please be sure to schedule yourself enough time, including travel time. If the client is a minor a parent or guardian must be present or on site the entire time.
Before the end of your first visit, Dr. Rafferty will determine whether you will benefit from further evaluation or begin treatment. In some cases, an additional visit may be necessary to complete the initial evaluation (such as for someone with an extensive psychiatric history or complicated presentation) as extra time may be needed to gather information from you, speak to your family or loved ones, review past medical records, or order any necessary lab work. If this is the case Dr. Rafferty will help you schedule time at a future date to complete the evaluation.
The initial evaluation is an opportunity for you to decide whether working with Dr. Rafferty will be a good fit for you. Dr. Rafferty does not prescribe medications until the initial evaluation is completed so please be sure that you have enough medication from your previous provider. If it turns out that you may benefit from treatment elsewhere you will be referred to an appropriate treatment center.
During the evaluation you will be asked questions about your current symptoms, your past psychiatric history, your medical history, and other relevant information. These questions may be personal and uncomfortable to talk about. Dr. Rafferty will make efforts to balance moving at your pace with obtaining all the necessary information to provide appropriate treatment.
If you have past medical or psychiatric records it may be helpful to bring copies of laboratory or other test results. If your child is to be the client, collateral information from the school and teacher is also helpful. Please have contact information for previous psychiatrists or physicians so that releases for collateral information can be completed if necessary.
Please bring all current prescription bottles with you to the first appointment so that Dr. Rafferty can be aware of all medications you are taking.
If your child is the client and under the age of 18, they must be accompanied by an adult for the duration of the evaluation and for each follow up appointment.
Fees and Policies
Dr. Rafferty accepts several insurances. Please contact her office to be sure your services will be covered.
Dr. Rafferty is not a Medicare provider and her services are not eligible for reimbursement by Medicare.
Dr. Rafferty does not do evaluations or complete paperwork for Workers’ Compensation or Disability Benefits.
Payments are due at the time of scheduling via credit card or at the time of appointment via cash or check. A block of time is reserved for your appointment so if you need to cancel please provide 24 business hours of advance notice. If you do not cancel in less than 24 business hours or fail to appear for an appointment you will be charged a fee for the visit. Your insurance company is unlikely to reimburse for missed sessions. Consistent attendance at follow up appointments is important for safe medical care. Prescriptions are sent electronically to your preferred pharmacy during appointments. Medications are not ordinarily refilled over the telephone except in the case of an emergency. You will then receive a prescription valid for enough medication until your next appointment. You are encouraged to contact Dr. Rafferty (or the emergency department in case of emergency) if you are having any problems with medications. It is your responsibility to ensure you have an appointment scheduled before your medications run out. Dr. Rafferty does not accept automatic refill requests from pharmacies. This is to ensure your health and safety by always checking that the medication you are taking is the right one for you.
Telehealth Informed Consent Form
I [print client’s name] ________________________________ hereby consent to engaging in telemedicine via Doxy.me, or other electronic means with Dr. Sonya E. Rafferty, NPP, LMHC (provider) as part of my treatment. I understand that “telemedicine” includes the practice of health care delivery, diagnosis, consultation, treatment, transfer of medical data, and education using interactive audio, video, or data communications. I understand that telemedicine also involves the communication of my personal medical/mental health information, both orally and visually, through electronic means, to health care practitioners located in New York State or outside of New York State.
I understand that I have the following rights with respect to telemedicine:
(1) I have the right to withhold or withdraw consent at any time without affecting my right to future care or treatment. Should I do so, I will not risk the loss or withdrawal of treatment benefits to which I would otherwise be entitled.
(2) The laws that protect the confidentiality of my medical information also apply to telemedicine. As such, I understand that the information disclosed by me during the course of my therapy is generally confidential. However, there are both mandatory and permissive exceptions to confidentiality, including, but not limited to: reporting child, elder, and dependent adult abuse; expressed threats of violence towards an ascertainable victim; and where I make my mental or emotional state an issue in a legal proceeding. I also understand that the dissemination of any personally identifiable images or information from the telemedicine interaction to any other entities shall not occur without my written consent.
(3) I understand that I may benefit from telemedicine, but that results cannot be guaranteed or assured.
(4) I understand that I have a right to access my mental health information and copies of my mental health records in accordance with New York State law.
(5) I also understand that there are inherent risks and consequences from telemedicine, including, but not limited to, the possibility, despite reasonable efforts on the part of my provider, that: the transmission of my medical information could be disrupted or distorted by technical failures; the transmission of my medical information or treatment could be interrupted or accessed by unauthorized persons; and/or the electronic storage of my medical information could be accessed by unauthorized persons.
(6) I understand that telemedicine based services and care may not be as complete as in-office services in some instances. I understand that if my provider believes I would be better served by another form of mental health services (e.g. in-office services), I will be referred to in-office services when or as needed.
(7) I agree that if I am feeling suicidal, homicidal, or otherwise experiencing a mental health crisis I will call 911, present to the nearest hospital emergency department, or contact the suicide hotline (1-800-273-8255).
(8) I understand that I am responsible to check with my state and with my insurance provider before engaging in telehealth services to be certain that services provided by Sonya Rafferty, NYS license #401492 will be approved and covered. I agree that I am responsible for all fees associated with these telehealth services.
(9) Finally, I understand that there are potential risks and benefits associated with any form of mental health treatment, and that despite my efforts and the efforts of my provider, my condition may not immediately improve, and in some cases may even decline. I have read and understand the information provided above. I have discussed any and all of my current questions with my provider and they have been answered to my satisfaction.
Signature of client/parent/guardian/conservator Date
If signed by other than client indicate relationship Date
Please feel free to contact Dr. Rafferty’s office with Clinical Associates of the Southern Tier if you have any further questions or would like to inquire about scheduling an appointment.
323 N. Tioga St
Ithaca, NY 14850