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Clinical Counselling is the use of clinical mental health counselling values, principles and methods for the purpose of assisting clients to understand their issues and concerns in order to enhance self-growth, personal effectiveness, interpersonal relations, life adjustments, spiritual growth, and mental health.

This may involve developing insight into, and/or learning to prevent and/or eliminate maladaptive behaviour or symptoms, in addition to the enhancement and strengthening of health coping styles and functional relationships with self and others.

Registered Clinical Counsellors have successfully fulfilled requirements of education, supervision and clinical experience to the satisfaction of the Association.

Some third party payment plans such as Extended Health Care Insurance and Employee/Family Assistance Programs pay partial or total coverage for counselling services.

Registered Clinical Counsellors work within an Association-approved scope of practice and offer a variety of educational and mental health related services for individuals, couples, families and groups.

Examples include:

  • Brief/Long Term Counselling/Therapy
  • Psychoeducational Programs
  • Vocational or Career Testing and Counselling
  • Organizational Consulting, Training and Development
  • Facilitation and Mediation
  • Clinical Teaching and Supervision
  • Employee/Family Assistance Program Management, Consulting and Delivery
  • Community Response and Critical Incident/Crisis Intervention

Registered Clinical Counsellors are qualified to address many clinical mental health issues through assessment, prevention, and treatment/intervention.

Some examples of concerns/issues which are appropriate to bring to a Clinical Counsellor include the following (not an all-inclusive list; many specialized concerns require specific counsellor training):

  • Grief and bereavement
  • Substance abuse
  • Personal growth and self-development
  • Sexual abuse/trauma
  • Depression, panic/anxiety, anger
  • Childhood and adolescent issues
  • Cross-cultural
  • Sexuality (Sex Therapy)
  • Communication skills, assertiveness, conflict resolution
  • Stress management
  • Life transitions
  • Obsessive/compulsive behaviour

The British Columbia Association of Clinical Counsellors was incorporated in 1988 with the principal goal of regulating the professional practice of clinical counsellors (see below) in the province of British Columbia.

Members of the Association must meet rigorous academic training (Masters-level equivalency), clinical experience and supervision requirements as part of BCACC’s entry criteria. Prospective members are also reviewed through a criminal record check and must submit references from recognized mental health practitioners.

BCACC permits members to identify themselves as “Registered Clinical Counsellors” (R.C.C.) and holds them accountable to the Association and to the public through our Code of Ethical Conduct and Standards of Clinical Practice and its complaints, investigation and discipline procedures.

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