Out of Plan vs. In Plan Therapy

My Advice:

Pick a psychologist who does NOT “take” your insurance.


Why should you do that?  Because it can save you money and get you better results in the long run.

In psychological terms, a statement like that is what’s called counter-intuitive.  In other words, you might assume that the opposite is true.  Or, putting it differently, I had better explain this or you’ll think I’m making no sense!

Paradoxically, it makes a lot of sense.  The reason is simple.  When your out-of-pocket share (see practice info) of the bill is greater, it means I have to prove myself more quickly and provide recognizable results in addressing your important issues.  That really sharpens my motivation and incentive, since I have to merit being an out-of-plan psychologist.

On the other hand, a psychologist who is in-plan is less pressed for results.  This can lead to simply   “running out the clock” and using up the client’s benefit allotment.  That could stretch out the time before you receive a treatment benefit (if it comes) and that can end up costing you more in co-pays.  It also takes up a lot more of your valuable time.

This treatment paradox is exactly why I decided long ago not to become a member of the insurance plans.  I realized that, by being an independent but licensed practitioner, I could be beholden strictly to my clients and address their needs most expeditiously.  I would bill insurance companies out-of-plan, but I wouldn’t have to kowtow to an insurance company limiting your treatment.  Plan-member practitioners do, or they face being kicked out of the plan.  I just couldn’t see how I could coach people in bravely confronting crucial issues in their lives if I had to play it safe with the insurance companies to save my practice.

My gamble in staying independent paid off, and my practice remains full.  In fact, taking my stand has only pushed me to higher standards.  People choose my services because of the unusual benefit of my practice style.

I often hear from new clients that I get much more done in every session than they had expected or even imagined before they met me. People frequently discover that they can see me a lot less than they thought would be necessary.  If you clearly can benefit from more sessions than your insurance company wants to dictate, I can fight for those sessions without fear of being tossed out of the plan.  I’ll be working on your side, for your issues, all the way.

Here’s the bottom line for you:

Since overcoming the pain of being personally stuck and achieving the joy of life-progress are the most important factors, choosing out-of-plan becomes a win-win situation for the people who see me.  You can truly save money and get better results in the long run.  Candidly, the most motivated and intelligent people of those who find me seem to come to the same conclusion that I have: “You have to be pretty good to be able to be busy and not ‘take’ insurance.”  It is thrilling for me to be able to work with these kinds of people.  You may be one of them.