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Respected Contributor
Posts: 4,358
Registered: ‎02-05-2011

What's Up with Psychologists?

My dear friend is going through a very challenging time.  We talk multiple times every day as she is out of state.  I'm there for her, but I am not a psychologist and we agreed she needs professional help.  She called her insurance company for names of local psychologists in her network.  She cannot afford any that would be out of network.  They gave her the names of four psychologists to call that are nearby.  She called one and left a message, no return call.  A few days later she called another one and left a message, no return call.  She left a message now for all four and no one has returned her call.  Her message was simple that she was calling regarding setting up an appointment.  I was proud of her for taking the first step but all in vain.  I find it awful that not one has reached out, what if it was someone who was truly in crisis.  She doesn't know where to turn.  So sad.

 

Have you or anyone you know run into this problem?  

Trusted Contributor
Posts: 1,378
Registered: ‎01-04-2014

Re: What's Up with Psychologists?

My understanding is that they're overworked and in short supply. 

Honored Contributor
Posts: 52,299
Registered: ‎03-10-2010

Re: What's Up with Psychologists?

My niece is a self employed therapist with an active practice.  I can assure you that her business practices are not those of the people you describe.  The ones your friend called may be employed by a HMO and may not be eager for more business. 

 

Tell your friend to be persistent and report that these people have not returned her calls.  Get more names and numbers. 

 

Does she by chance work for a company with an EAP? 

New Mexico☀️Land Of Enchantment
Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 7,559
Registered: ‎03-20-2010

Re: What's Up with Psychologists?

@Biftu  Does she have a primary care physician?  If so her PCP should be able to contact one of them for her.

Contributor
Posts: 59
Registered: ‎06-15-2015

Re: What's Up with Psychologists?

I am a retired LCSW and worked in community mental health for over 25 years.  She can try calling the local county mental health program in her area to see if they will see her.  Some places will not take people with private insurance, but others may.  It is worth a try for her.  If by some chance she is a senior citizen, she can contact her local Council on Aging for assistance.

 

I recognize that these providers are overburdened, but there is a social responsibilty for providers to offer care, so she should keep trying.  

Frequent Contributor
Posts: 83
Registered: ‎06-07-2016

Re: What's Up with Psychologists?

@Biftu ...I am so sorry that your friend is having trouble  getting set up with a psychologist. From my personal experience a few years ago, I agree that they are in short supply. I suggest that your friend contact her county Mental Health Association for additional names she can call and to share her recent experience of no response from those she has already called. She could also connect with her primary care doctor, especially if she has a long-standing relationship with them. They may be willing to interact with a psychologist to assist in getting her an intake appointment. She will be in my thoughts and prayers as she pursues professional treatment.

Honored Contributor
Posts: 24,029
Registered: ‎05-10-2010

Re: What's Up with Psychologists?

She should see her pcp and ask him or her for a referral to mental health professional.

Respected Contributor
Posts: 4,358
Registered: ‎02-05-2011

Re: What's Up with Psychologists?


@Kachina624 wrote:

My niece is a self employed therapist with an active practice.  I can assure you that her business practices are not those of the people you describe.  The ones your friend called may be employed by a HMO and may not be eager for more business. 

 

Tell your friend to be persistent and report that these people have not returned her calls.  Get more names and numbers. 

 

Does she by chance work for a company with an EAP? 


@Kachina624 She's retired.  She drove by two of the ones she called and both are in private homes.  They may not be eager for more business but they should at least have the courtesy to return her call and say they are not accepting new patients if that is the case.
Respected Contributor
Posts: 4,358
Registered: ‎02-05-2011

Re: What's Up with Psychologists?


@retired at last wrote:

I am a retired LCSW and worked in community mental health for over 25 years.  She can try calling the local county mental health program in her area to see if they will see her.  Some places will not take people with private insurance, but others may.  It is worth a try for her.  If by some chance she is a senior citizen, she can contact her local Council on Aging for assistance.

 

I recognize that these providers are overburdened, but there is a social responsibilty for providers to offer care, so she should keep trying.  


@retired at last   I'll tell her to look into your suggestions.  I would not have thought of that, thanks.  She is a senior citizen.  She got the names from her insurance company who said these people are in her network.  She is entitled to this benefit covered under her insurance so this just isn't right.  Someone experiencing mental health issues should not have to jump through hoops to get care.

Trusted Contributor
Posts: 1,613
Registered: ‎05-02-2017

Re: What's Up with Psychologists?

 

 

Right now many medical professionals are overburdened.

 

It is important to be a strong advocate for one's own health and be persistent.  I would be calling a place a few times daily if I really wanted to get through to them. 

 

Unfortunately, they may not return calls as quickly as people want them to be returned.

 

It sounds as if those practices are very small.  Perhaps the psychologists are even on vacation, or do not have office help.

 

I understand you are her friend, but you said you live out of state.  Doesn't she have any family or neighbors, or a place of worship she could also turn to for more immediate assistance?

 

There was a lot of great advice shared on this thread.  

 

It appears your friend really relies on you and you are always there for her. You sound like a very good friend, but sometimes people have to learn how to help themselves as well. 

I wish the best for both of you.