If you are in Florida, in mental health and have/want a private practice, you will want tips for therapists who want to take insurance in Florida. It is very common for clients to want to use their insurance for mental health services. There are a lot of therapists in private practice who are serving the population and making a living by accepting insurance.
If you are interested in learning more about accepting insurance, follow these top five tips for therapists who want to take insurance in Florida:
1. Gather all your paperwork and information
You will need a copy of your license, malpractice insurance and transcripts. Different insurance companies require different information so you want to make sure you are prepared. I recommend you keep a folder with all of this information in it with copies of everything for issue finding. You’ll want to keep a physical copy, as well as an electronic copy. Some insurance companies want you to submit through portals/emails and others want a good ole hardcopy.
2. Register with CAQH- https://proview.caqh.org
This is one of the most important steps you’ll need to take. It is time consuming but worth it. All of the major insurance companies work with CAQH. CAQH is an amazing non-profit that reduces the amount of paperwork you have to submit to each insurance panel. Not all insurance panels use CAQH but the major ones do so be sure to keep on top of this step. You’ll need a lot of information for CAQH, so be sure to have your documents ready.
3. Identify which panels you want to join
Not all insurance panels are designed the same, so you may need to do some research about which ones to apply for. Start with people who are geographically close to you and ask them about what insurance panels they are on. It might be difficult to find out reimbursement rates; however you can find out about paperwork requirements, etc that will help guide your decision.
I’ve created a comprehensive list of insurance panels in Florida with a link to their provider portal or “Join Network” information. You can get a copy of that list on Practikat here: https://practikat.com/products/florida-insurance-panel-list/
This is an affiliate link; however it’s a product that I use in my individual and group practice to get on insurance panels.
4. Join the panels
Once you have identified which panels you want to join, it’s time to set a couple of hours aside to complete their applications. I suggest you do this where you have access to a printer, internet, copier and all of your paperwork. Some applications are hand-written. Some applications will require you to fax or scan in documents. Each insurance panel will have a website with information on how to join their network. You can always call “provider relations” and have them guide you through the process. You can use a company and there are several good ones out there to choose from.
5. Offer to check Out of Network benefits
This is one area therapists can begin to work on. By checking out of network benefits, you can offer more options to your clients. You may discover that many insurance panels offer excellent reimbursement rates for out of network benefits. Clients are often delighted to be able to use your insurance and see the clinician they choose.
By taking insurance, you can begin to build your practice quickly. Once you are on panels, you can always look into changing your contracts from a solo practitioner to a group practice and bring on employees or independent contractors. There are more options out there for people who want to take insurance while in private practice.
If you’re a therapist and want to join in on the conversation about Private Practice, be sure to join the Facebook group “My Private Practice Tribe” here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/myprivatepracticetribe/
Amanda Patterson, LMHC, CAP, NCC is the owner of Caring Therapists of Broward, a group practice in Davie, Florida. She specializes in working with young adults and teens with depression and anxiety. She is the founder of “My Private Practice Tribe”, a Facebook group for therapists looking to build successful private practices. She helps therapists with business, financial and market planning. To schedule a 15-minute consultation on your private practice needs, visit her website here: https://www.amandapattersonlmhc.com/work-with-amanda/