Does Insurance Cover Online Counseling ?

Written by an iTherapy Provider

Does Insurance Cover Online Counseling ?

Does my Insurance cover this ?  Whether I meet a client online or in my office, this is one of the first questions clients ask me, usually after are you licensed? The answer is the same whether I am meeting someone online or in my office, that is “I am not sure, but I know how to find out.”

Even employees who work for the same company and have the same insurance provider can have different plans, with different benefits and deductibles and copayments. Now with the Affordable Care Act there are even more plans with more confusing benefit structures.

Whether you plan to see a counselor online or in their office, it is a good idea that you verify your insurance before your first appointment so that there are no surprises. Imagine how terrible it would feel to share your story and feelings and then be excited that you have found a counselor you like, only to find your insurance plan does not cover services or that you can’t afford the payments.

I think you can see the benefit of checking on your coverage before you bare your soul.

The steps to verify whether your visits are covered are the same whether you plan to see a counselor online or in an office. You should contact your insurance company and ask the following questions:

  •  Does my plan cover Mental Health Benefits?
  •  What is my Mental Health Deductible? – It may be separate from your medical deductible.
  •  Have I met my deductible? If not how much have I contributed towards my deductible.
  •  Do I have a Copayment or Coinsurance that will be due at the time of service?
  • Are Online Therapy Services (Telemental Health Services) covered under my plan? (Many states require that insurance companies cover online services).
  • Ask your insurance company if it requires the therapist to be part of a preferred provider network.
  • Is there a limit to the number of sessions?

More than 17 states require insurance companies cover Online Counseling, so there is a good chance you are covered. Many states require the counselor be based in the state where you live, while others do not. Even if you find you are  not covered by insurance, many services are very affordable, for instance irx.thedotsmedia.com currently offers a $25.00 initial session with additional sessions at reasonable rates. 

It has never been more convenient to receive counseling, it is a difficult decision to take the first step, but it is one that can change your life forever.If you would like more information you can visit: www.irx.thedotsmedia.com and view the “Insurance” section found in the online counseling dropdown box.

Hope to see you there!

Carol Pulley

Licensed Psychological Associate

February 20, 2014 / Uncategorized / Tags: ,

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Comments (8)

  1. :

    Your post is valuable , thanks for the info http://myhealthandwellness.pen.io

    • :

      Thank you for your kind words.

  2. :

    It’s good to know more about insurance and online therapy. I’ve heard that talking to these psychiatrist online can be really helpful, so I want my brother to try it for his depression. I’ll be sure to see if his insurance covers mental health benefits, like you said, before suggesting this to him.

    • :

      Thank you Ridley for your interest. Check out the providers on our site (Our Counselors – https://itherapy.com/about_our_counselors/) as some use insurance, sliding scale, and/or are willing to work with you. e-Therapy/Online Therapy is a great resource right now and our providers have HIPAA compliant secure video and other HIPAA tools to make sure it is safe secure environment and with more convenience to their clients. Let us know if you need any assistance and call 1-800-432-7996.

  3. :

    That is a great piece of advice to verify your insurance before the first appointment so that there are no surprises. That would be good before doing online counseling of any kind. If I were going to do counseling that verifying my insurance would be one of the first steps. http://virtualpsychiatryforhousestaff.com/

  4. :

    That’s good to know that more than 17 states require insurance companies to cover online counseling so you could do that if you don’t want to go in. My cousin has really high anxiety that makes it hard for her to leave the house, so I’m looking for an option to help her out. We’ll have to check if her insurance covers online counseling so we can set up an appointment for her so she can get some help without having to leave her home so she’ll feel more comfortable.

    • :

      Thank you Hazel for reaching out and caring to look out for your cousin. Here is a link to Our Counselors page, which lets you select based on diagnosis (i.e. Anxiety) or you scroll to the bottom to select the state the Counselors are Licensed and what insurance they accept (some accept sliding-scale payments too). Hope her insurance covers online-counseling (Telehealth) so she can access counselors in a more convenient and comfortable way. On-line counseling is becoming more accepted with insurance. Feel free to email us if you have any questions.

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