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Thriving in a Recession - With and Without Insurance

  • 02 Dec 2011
  • 8:30 AM - 3:30 PM
  • Citrus State Historic Park: Sunkist Center, 9400 Dufferin Ave. Riverside, CA (just off La Sierra Ave.)

Thriving in a Recession - With and Without Insurance

Barbara Griswold, LMFT

Yes, the ideal therapy practice may be that with all private pay clients. However, in difficult economic times, many clients need therapists who accept their insurance. And therapists need to survive and thrive too!! Does working with non private pay clients mean fee discounts for therapists, limited sessions, mountainous paperwork, and compromising confidentiality?

This entertaining workshop addresses what EVERY therapist should know about insurance. Even if you never sign a plan contract, what you don't know can hurt you and your clients. We will challenge common misconceptions, and discuss costly mistakes many therapists make. You’ll learn how to turn first-time callers into new clients – even if you aren’t on their health plan. We’ll identify 12 Crucial Questions when checking coverage, and learn ways to quickly and adequately prepare claim documents in order to get prompt reimbursement. You will be shown techniques to make your practice more robust and fun enabling you to thrive in a frustrating economic climate. 


The speaker is Barbara Griswold, MFT, the author of "Navigating the Insurance Maze: The Therapist's Complete Guide to Working with Insurance -- And Whether You Should." More info can be found at: www.navigatingtheinsurancemaze.com. In private practice in San Jose, Barbara is also an instructor at JFK and Santa Clara Universities, and writes a monthly enewsletter on insurance issues. She provides phone consultations to therapists with insurance questions and problems, and invites you to contact her at barbgris@aol.com with your questions. Barbara has served on the California Assn. of Marriage and Family Therapists Ethics Committee.

Participants will know:

· what insurance is and how to work with it.

· what choices to make regarding being a provider of services for mental health benefits of an health insurance company

· how to better serve clients by knowing some basics about the different types of plans.

· questions to ask when checking insurance to avoid denials that could lead to treatment disruption

· what clients should know about confidentiality / HIPAA privacy

· how to avoid costly mistakes many therapists make when dealing with insurance

· and how to fill out a claim form so that it processes quickly

· how the criteria of Medical Necessity can help you advocate for client care

· how to avoid common actions that are actually insurance fraud

· how taking insurance can affect treatment and clinical decision making

· how to integrate insurance into your practice so you can make your services more accessible to clients of all socioeconomic backgrounds.


A luncheon provided on location. Time to schmooze with other therapists present.


During the past ten years Doreen Van Leeuwen has expanded her therapeutic presence in Riverside and Corona beginning as a sub contractor teaching anger management classes, then evolving into a small home-based practice, and now settled into her nearly ideal private practice. She leases a suite of rooms in Corona, several of which she sub leases to five other therapists, whose businesses she is privileged to help promote.

She will share techniques she has been using to:

· Increase her client base and income

· Create a vision for her practice to make it more fun

· Manage her time effectively while in and out of the therapy session

· Increase community awareness of her presence as a provider of mental health therapeutic services

· Reduce the frustrations of office paper work and session documentation

· Submit insurance claims electronically at no or very minimal cost or extra effort

· Take advantage of internet based technologies

· Structure her efforts so she could commandeer her spouse to do more of her “back office” drudgery / busywork - or make it easily transferable to other “help.”

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