Paying for therapy is part of making a commitment to it. You can pay privately or use your health insurance. There are pros and cons to doing either. Self-pay comes out of your pocket, at least initially, and if you seek reimbursement from insurance it can take time and paperwork. On the other hand, you can often deduct it as a medical expense on your taxes. In addition self-pay gives you more freedom and privacy than going through your insurance. Some clients prefer to pay out of pocket because they would prefer to avoid using insurance to cover mental health care, to maintain their privacy, or because they are not able to find someone on their provider panel that feels like a “good fit.”
Although insurance plans will sometimes cover a large portion of your initial sessions, there is a price tag that comes with it. For insurance to pay, therapy needs to be considered “medically necessary,” meaning you will need to be given a diagnosis of a medical condition. This can make it very difficult to obtain life or long-term disability insurances. Using insurance invites a third party into your therapy, often in the form of a case manager who wants to know particular details about you and your treatment. They may and often do call your therapist for updates, and many patients find this intrusive and upsetting. Lastly, even after you have given up privacy and obtained a medical diagnosis, the insurance company may decide they will not pay for your treatment any more, whether you are finished or not.
Whatever you decide, I will be happy to provide you the information you need. I accept most insurances with out-of-network benefits, and can provide you a superbill which will help you request authorization and process your claims.
Like you, I am embedded in a late stage capitalist system, and I can only offer a limited number of pro bono or low cost appointments for which there is usually a waitlist. My current fee is $225 for your initial consultation, and $200 for subsequent appointments. I do not have a sliding scale fee structure. Please feel free to contact me about those and if I can’t offer you one I will try to direct you to other options.