Clinical FAQs

What's the difference between a clinician and a mental health professional?

A  counsellor  is a particular kind of professional. At McGill, you can see them for short-term treatment for a mental health issue. They'll develop a wellness plan with you and may decide that one-on-one therapy is the best approach.  A psychiatrist is a mental health professional with a medical degree whose main form of treatment is usually medication for more severe mental health conditions. Psychiatrists require a referral from a doctor. A Local Wellness Advisor is a mental health professional embedded within each faculty and service (such as International Students, Residences, and BI&POC Students and others) to orient and connect you with the appropriate support resource. They also conduct one-on-one sessions and wellness workshops. 'Mental Health Professional' is an umbrella term used to refer to both counsellors and psychiatrists, who specialize, have training in, and work towards treating mental health issues

What are the benefits of meeting with a mental health professional?

Meeting with a mental health professional is an opportunity for individuals to discuss their concerns and issues in a safer and more confidential atmosphere with an interested and objective professional. A one-on-one style session might work best for some, while others might benefit most from group environments. The possibilities are wide-ranging and a mental health professional at the Hub can guide you in the process of finding the most beneficial route for you. Thousands of students have found meeting with a mental health professional helpful in dealing with the academic, personal, and social challenges of university life.

Why is a referral needed to see a psychiatrist?

Many classes of psychiatric symptoms can also be caused by physical health conditions (e.g. hypothyroidism can cause depressive symptoms) and can be ruled out by a doctor.

Is McGill hiring more doctors?

Yes, the Student Wellness Hub continually recruits additional doctors. 

Back to top