My fee is $175 for a 55 minute session. Telephone therapy is pro-rated, based on the hourly rate, but may not be billed to insurance. A sliding fee scale is available for those without insurance and/or wish to self-pay.
I accept self-pay and several insurance plans, including regular Medicare. Unfortunately, I no longer accept United Health Care or Cigna. Please verify coverage with your insurance provider before beginning therapy, including copay and any deductible you are responsible for before benefits are paid.
Most individuals want to use their insurance, and this is understandable. However, you should be aware that there are advantages to paying for your therapy privately. The most obvious advantage is that with Self-Pay, no psychiatric diagnosis code need be assigned and the exposure of your confidential health information is minimized.
When using your insurance, a psychiatric diagnosis code is necessary in order for the provider to justify medical necessity for the services provided and to obtain payment. Once a diagnosis code is recorded by the insurance, it becomes part of your permanent health care record.
The major advantage of Self-Pay is that no diagnosis or therapy records exist in the Medical Information Bureau. MIB records of your therapy could potentially compromise your ability to obtain life, health, disability, or long-term care insurance, as well as potentially compromise current or prospective employment opportunities. When you pay for therapy yourself, your therapy remains completely private (with the usual exceptions to confidentiality such as in the event of persistent suicidal ideation, etc.). No reports of your treatment are shared with your insurance and all records remain with the therapist only.
A further advantage is that with Self-Pay, you may choose the type and frequency of treatment needed to achieve maximum symptom relief. Commonly, certain modes of therapy, such as couples, family, group, or telephone therapy, are limited or not covered at all by your insurance. Frequency of sessions and length of continuation of treatment are also often limited. Self-Pay allows you to assume and remain in total control, with the peace of mind of knowing that your records are truly confidential.
To make Self-Pay feasible, I offer a sliding-fee scale. I encourage you to ask about this option.