Q: How do I know if my health insurance has mental health coverage?
A: Check with your human resources department or insurance company for specific details about your coverage. Here are some important points to consider:
- Check to see whether your coverage uses provider networks. Typically, patients are required to pay more out-of-pocket costs when visiting an out-of-network provider. Call your insurance company or visit the company’s website for a list of in-network providers.
- Ask about copayments. A copay is a charge that your insurance company requires you to pay out of pocket for a specific service. For instance, you may have a $20 copay for each office visit.
- Ask about your deductible. A deductible is the amount that you must pay out-of-pocket before your health insurance makes any payments. Depending on your deductible, for instance, you may have to pay $500 or even $5,000 out-of-pocket before your insurance company will begin making payments on claims. As a result of the parity law, your deductible should apply to both mental and physical health coverage.
- Talk to your provider. When you call to schedule an appointment with a mental health provider, ask if he or she accepts your insurance. On this website I have listed the insurance companies I accept. I will bill your insurance company directly and you just provide a copayment, if your plan has a copay.
Q: What is the difference between a psychiatrist vs a psychologist?
A: While the two professions are distinct, psychologists, and psychiatrists both play important roles in mental health treatment. Very often, they work in collaboration with one another to provide the best possible treatment for an individual.
For example, patients may begin by seeing their primary care physician about the psychological symptoms that they are experiencing. Their doctor may then refer them to a psychologist for further evaluation. That psychologist may observe, assess, and diagnose the patient before referring them to a psychiatrist who can prescribe and monitor medications.
The psychologist and psychiatrist may work together, with the psychologist offering behavioral interventions and the psychiatrist providing or adjusting medication, in order to best address the patient’s symptoms. The type of approach needed often depends on the severity of the symptoms and the needs and wishes of the patient.
According to patients differ as to what is preferred— psychotherapy alone or in combination with medication—which, therefore, can affect what professionals they see. The expense can also be a mitigating factor; some studies have found that combining treatment approaches may also be more cost-effective for patients. As a psychologist, I do not prescribe medication however, I often work with physicians and psychiatrists who do prescribe medication when a Release of Information is in place.
Q: Do you provide teletherapy services?
A: Yes, I do provide teletherapy services for it offers a critical avenue to not only sustain mental and behavioral health services, but to expand them during the pandemic. Advocates have called for the expansion of teletherapy for decades. Unfortunately, many of the critical orders that have allowed for the expansion of Teletherapy services may expire, and it is unclear how many of these expansions — if any — will be extended.
Q: What is teletherapy services?
A: Teletherapy is any remote therapy that uses technology to help the therapist and client communicate.
Q: What are the benefits of teletherapy for clients?
A: Teletherapy provides a range of benefits in comparison with traditional therapy. Most research suggests that teletherapy can be as effective as in-person therapy. The benefits of seeking research-supported teletherapy with a licensed therapist include:
- Greater access to care: Some people are unable to use traditional therapy due to physical disabilities, geographic location, or scheduling issues.
- Lower costs: Clients incur fewer therapy-associated expenses when they do not have to travel to receive treatment or pay for child or elder care.
- High satisfaction: Users of quality teletherapy report high satisfaction with treatment.
- More privacy: People who choose teletherapy do not have to worry about running into others at the office and enjoy seeking treatment in the privacy of their homes. For some, this alleviates privacy concerns.
- Better public health: The COVID-19 health crisis demonstrates that the ability to seek treatment at home can slow the spread of infection during epidemics and pandemics.
Management & Behavior Consultants, P.C.
955 E. 8th Street; Suite 2 B
Traverse City, MI 49686