At Mark Besen Ph.D. Psychological Services, we strive to provide high quality, comprehensive, psychological and neuropsychological evaluations to assist individuals and their families to obtain the most appropriate and effective treatment services. We work collaboratively with healthcare providers, educational professionals, social service and other agencies to ensure excellent coordination of care on behalf of the individuals we serve.
About Mark Besen, Ph.D.
Dr. Besen is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania and Hahnemann University. He is a licensed clinical psychologist with over 25 years post licensure experience in hospital/medical, community behavioral health and private practice settings. He has held clinical and administrative leadership roles in large behavioral health organizations and is a nationally certified suicide prevention trainer and consultant through the QPR institute.
Dr. Besen currently specializes in providing psychological and neuropsychological testing for ages 6-90+.
Psychological and Neuropsychological Testing
What is the value of psychological or neuropsychological testing?
Psychological testing allows for information to be obtained through methods that do not solely rely on interview alone. We can evaluate brain functioning as well as information obtained through standardized tools in addition to information obtained in clinical interview. This allows us to better understand presenting problems and provide more accurate diagnoses than can typically be obtained by brief office visits with a healthcare provider or even through a clinical interview at a traditional psychiatric or behavioral health practice. Because we are a specialty practice where testing is all the we do, we are able to spend significantly more time with each patient and their family members to obtain a more comprehensive evaluation. The majority of referrals we receive are from physician practices and other behavioral health providers who are looking for information to assist them in guiding their medical decision making and treatment planning.
In the case of neuropsychological evaluations, we are able to identify if a patient is experiencing impairment in memory and other areas of cognition which are unlikely solely due to aging. We can also identify patterns of impairment that may be consistent with various types of neurocognitive disorder such as Alzheimer’s disease, vascular dementia, stroke, post concussive syndrome, or brain injury. We can provide information to assist families with determination of need for guardianship or other supports for loved ones. Neuropsychological testing assists neurologists and other medical providers in making differential diagnoses and understanding the specific type and severity of impairment in their patients.
In the case of psychological evaluations for children and adolescents, we are able to assess for additional factors contributing to difficulty with learning such as the presence of an Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, Depressive and/or Anxiety Disorders, impact of past trauma, prenatal exposure to substances, Intellectual Disability or screening for likelihood of specific learning disorder.
What happens during psychological or neuropsychological evaluation and testing?
The psychological evaluations we provide include a clinical interview which consists of collecting background information from patients and accompanying family members and/or other support individuals. During the clinical interview, we will ask about details associated with the presenting concern for which testing is being requested, current and past symptoms, past relevant behavioral health treatment history, risk factors, medical history, medications, and social history. This information helps us better understand results we obtain through testing and also assists us in determining the most appropriate assessments to use during testing. The clinical interview typically lasts about an hour. We strongly encourage family participation during the interview. In the case of neuropsychological evaluations for suspected memory impairment we ask for another individual who is familiar with the person being tested to also attend the interview.
Following the clinical interview, either the psychologist or a psychological technician will administer a battery of tests through a variety of methods including use of computers and iPads, oral questions, rating forms, and manipulation of materials. The tests we utilize assess intellectual and cognitive functioning abilities as they relate to the presenting concerns and also assess for the presence of symptoms and behaviors associated with various psychological disorders. In the case of a neuropsychological evaluation, more extensive testing in areas of memory, language, complex attention and central executive functioning are conducted to further assess for the presence of neurocognitive impairment associated with dementias or brain injury. Routine psychological testing usually takes between 2-3 hours. Neuropsychological testing may take four or more hours. We attempt to complete both the clinical interview and all testing on the same day, allowing for breaks and snacks/lunch as needed. If necessary, we may schedule additional testing visits. Family members or other support individuals are an important part of the assessment and in the case of child/adolescent testing and neuropsychological testing, we request family members or individuals who know the patient well to complete symptom and behavior rating scales as part of testing.
Once testing has been completed you will be scheduled for a follow-up consultation within 1-2 weeks to review the results of testing and discuss treatment recommendations. At the time of the follow-up visit we will also provide referrals for services we may recommend based on the results of testing. We will also provide you with a written summary of results and recommendations as well as diagnoses identified through evaluation and testing at the time of the follow-up consultation. You will receive a full testing report summarizing background information, detailed scores and interpretations, and recommendations through an encrypted email several weeks following the feedback visit. We will also provide copies of the full testing report to referring physicians and other sources who you identify.
Insurance and Payment
We are in network with the following insurance companies:
Blue Cross Blue Shield
Tricare Prime, Select, For Life and Retired
United Health Care
For your convenience we offer discounted self-pay pricing.
Our office accepts all major credit cards (Visa, MasterCard, American Express, and Discover)
Please call our office to get a quote on the services you may require.