Updated: Jan 15, 2022
Hope the holidays have treated you and your families well and that you are ready to continue onward as we move into 2022. Over the last month there’s been a lot of under-the-hood changes going on for myself and the practice and thus this post is meant as an overall update to how things have been going and what you will be seeing in the future. In no particular order.
First things, the usual new year reminders:
1) If you use insurance, your deductible likely resets 01/01 and thus you may be responsible for paying out of pocket until your deductible is met again. I will be doing benefits checks on everyone throughout the first week of January and will be reviewing things with each of you just in case. Please be mindful and if we need to change your card on file we can do so.
2) New year means paperwork updates. So expect to be seeing some new Informed Consents going out to sign and some other updates that I will get to shortly. I may also be grabbing new ROIs and stuff and doing some general admin TLC on files.
3) Due to the ongoing pandemic and the way that things are going right now in the state and country, I made the choice this year to not impose any fee increases. As before, I do not raise fees on clients currently in treatment with me.
4) I am also not changing any of my office hours. All of that will remain the same.
5) If you are going into the new year with an outstanding balance for services, please speak with me so we can update our payment arrangements. My goal is to work with you to manage those balances.
Now for some 2022 specific things:
1) I am going to be renegotiating some of my insurance contracts this year. I have already completed negotiations with Cigna (now called Evernorth for their behavioral health division) and thus some clients may see a change on how much they owe for their coinsurance or amounts towards deductible. I will be able to catch these differences going through our usual benefits check together. My changes were finalized 12/05. For other contracts, I will keep everyone updated. I am still attempting to get on BCBS myself but thus far no luck.
2) I have made the decision to leave the psych hospital and focus solely on my practice for now. I will probably re-engage in community mental health at some point but balancing both has become too much for my mental health. That means that I will be able to continue implementing changes to the practice and fully focusing on client care. That being said…
3) I’m going to be making bigger updates to the office. I ask for patience with my construction efforts. Some of the changes are going to be a bit bigger in scope so I also apologize for re-acclimating to the actual space. The goal is to increase functionality and to efficiently use the space better. I also want to be able to get some slightly more seating space.
4) I have been experimenting over the last year with collecting outcomes data with some clients and this will be getting fully integrated this year. I’ll be using an iPad to collect data and will also be sending out links to clients with reminders so you can fill them out from your phone too. Launch window TBA.
5) I have had my online scheduling turned off for about a year now. I will be looking into turning that back on at some point; I have been enjoying keeping a tighter control on my schedule due to the high volume of clients I see. But for those of you who enjoy that feature, it will be back soon.
6) In addition to turning back on my scheduling, I'm also going to be automating my reminders system. Starting mid January you will begin to see this. All of it is securely incorporated into my system. You will receive either a text or e-mail (depending on which you prefer) and it gives you the option of confirming the appointment as well.
7) Not everyone knows about this, but over the last few months I’ve been studying to sit for a licensing exam to become a certified personal trainer. That will be happening this year and afterwards I plan on incorporating some of that knowledge and training into my practice. None of it is super fleshed out yet but it will be a budding project as I continue.
One of the big updates that we need to go over (and I will be reviewing it with everyone whenever I see you) is the new implemented No Surprises Act that starts effective 01/01/22. This will be in effect immediately for private pay clients and at some point later in the year for clients using health insurance benefits. The law itself is massive and mostly applies to hospital/inpatient settings but I will be reviewing the parts that apply to us in session. You can also see here for the CMS consumer website and you can also click the button in the header for more info.
For COVID news, please click my COVID button on the header. Right now, I’m still doing a mix of in-person and telehealth however I may move fully online for a time depending on how bad it gets in January. I will be keeping in close contact with everyone over any changes.
Whew, that’s a lot of change. I’m excited for what’s next to come! I want to thank all of my clients for trusting me with their time and process and can’t wait to see where we go next. I’m shooting for a year of learning, reflection, and diving further into public health.
If anyone has any questions, please feel free to reach out to me to discuss.