We hear this all the time! Clients asking us, “Why can’t I find an in-network therapist?” Many clients have benefits they’d like to use to help defray the cost of therapy. We get that! We wanted to take a moment and explain why it can be tough and provide some ideas to help you get the support you need.
- Insurance company networks choose how many therapists they will let participate. Many networks are “closed” to new providers. That means a fantastic therapist may not be able to become an in-network provider for your insurance plan.
- It limits confidentiality and we want to protect our client’s information. Insurance companies determine whether your therapy is “medically necessary.” What that means is they can request and look at your records and make a decision regarding whether they think you need therapy. Your therapist doesn’t decide. You don’t decide. Someone you’ve never met decides. That means your privacy is limited when you use your insurance benefits.
- We can’t diagnose you if you don’t meet the criteria and we know you can benefit from counseling even if what’s going on isn’t “diagnosable.” Insurance companies require a diagnosis and they pick which diagnoses they will cover. Had a bad breakup? Trying to sift through a career change? You likely don’t meet the diagnostic criteria for a “mental disorder” and that means services are not covered.
So what can you do to afford the support you need when you can’t find an in-network therapist?
- Pick an amazing therapist who’s a good fit for you. Spending even $20 on a crappy therapist is spending too much. Take your time to find someone with whom you click and who has the skills to help you. When you have the right fit, the work goes much more quickly!
- Check with your insurance company to see what your out-of-network benefits might be. Sometimes people are surprised by what might be covered!
- Look over your budget to see if you can spend less in other areas. Therapy isn’t meant to last forever – is there something you can cut for a few months that would make therapy possible?
- Check out this blog post with lots of other ideas for making a little extra money that can help you afford your counselor.
- Decide the investment is worth it. If you have found a rock-star therapist and you’re all-in with the process you are most likely to get great results. You’re investing in your health and well-being. When we see it that way we are often willing to make some sacrifices in other areas to make counseling possible.
We know you work hard and pay a lot for your insurance benefits and it can be a real drag when you can’t find an in-network therapist, but that surely does not have to limit your ability to get amazing therapy!
Are you ready to get the support you need? Give us a call at 919-891-0525 today to schedule a free, 15-minute phone consultation. We will be happy to explore how we may be able to help you. If we are your rockstar therapist, appointments may be scheduled for our Wake Forest counseling office or online.