Our study, entitled “The Challenges of Private Practice: A Study of Clinicians’ Experiences Providing Mental Health Care in Massachusetts,” was published in April 2015 by the University of Massachusetts Donahue Institute.
Key findings from the study include:
Private practice clinicians across the Commonwealth face significant challenges providing care, particularly in relation to working with insurance companies and participating in insurance panels.
The two most frequent barriers highlighted were related to inadequate reimbursement rates from insurance companies and various problems encountered when dealing with managed care organizations (MCOs).
Low reimbursement rates and the challenges encountered when working with insurance companies not only affect the availability of services, they also affect the quality of care. Private practice clinicians are increasingly making adjustments to their practices to keep them financially viable.
Clinicians cited the lack of resources across the Commonwealth and acknowledged that there are regional differences in the availability of services. Services specifically mentioned include outpatient clinics, community mental health centers, hospital clinics, inpatient hospitals, acute care facilities, partial hospitals and intensive outpatient programs, residential facilities, detox/substance abuse programs, eating disorder programs, and services for children and adolescents.