Cost is a significant factor for many people when it comes to mental health treatment. More than 40% of adults in a national study said they couldn’t get the mental health treatment they need because they couldn’t afford it. While you may not be able to do much about the price of treatment, you can be upfront with potential clients about treatment costs and their options. That means addressing treatment costs on your website and in your marketing.
How Much Does Mental Health Treatment Cost?
You have a good idea of how much mental health treatment costs at your own center or practice, but how does it compare with averages? This knowledge can help you know who your services are likely for and how much the price may be a barrier.
Therapy typically costs $100 to $250 an hour. About half of therapists accept insurance.
When it comes to mental health treatment centers, prices can range from $10,000 to $60,000 a month. Partial hospitalization programs cost an average of $10,000-$15,000 a month. There isn’t reliable data about how many treatment centers accept insurance. It’s up to the center’s directors.
Why Not Accept Insurance?
With the price of mental health care potentially such a factor, it may make some people wonder why you don’t accept insurance. Of course, a therapist or treatment center might not want to accept insurance coverage for multiple reasons. The most significant reasons are that the payouts from insurance companies are lower than private pay, and the administrative oversight for insurance submissions is burdensome. In addition, it can take a long time to receive insurance payments, and they may not cover certain legitimate treatments that you think are necessary for clients.
In other words, you have solid reasons for your payment structure and insurance decisions. You want to make sure people considering your services understand them and how they might still be able to receive care.
How to Address Treatment Costs in Your Marketing
Transparency is key when it comes to explaining the costs of your treatment. After all, it doesn’t do you or potential clients any good to schedule appointments or undergo the admissions process only to discover that they can’t afford it. That’s why you want to be upfront about the cost of treatment and what payment options you provide, even in your marketing and specifically on your website.
Explain Pricing and Treatment Options
Chances are you offer various types of treatment at your center. Eliminate uncertainty by explaining the treatment options (i.e., inpatient and outpatient) and how much each costs.
While you hope people can and will make decisions about their treatment based on what they need, some people may not be able to afford residential treatment, but they can pay for an outpatient program. If that’s the case, even if residential treatment would best suit their needs, some services are better than none at all.
Educate on Treatments
Regardless of what people buy, they want to know what they’re getting for their money. That means you want to help people understand why treatment costs what it does and what it entails. Show photos of your center and explain its amenities. Give detailed information about what’s included in treatment, including various modalities, experiential therapies, hands-on classes, and group sessions.
Be Clear About Insurance
Be clear about whether you accept insurance. If you do, be sure to explain what insurance policies you take and give an idea of coverage, if possible.
If you can’t estimate coverage because it varies so much, provide a clear method to get more information. For example, you can provide a form on your site that helps people check their insurance coverage. Be sure to also provide contact information at your center in case they need more information or want to ask a human their questions.
People who seek mental health treatment are taking a leap of faith. They feel like something is wrong, but they can’t see it like a physical wound that would send them to the doctor. They want to understand that they should feel emotionally better and that it’s possible to live differently.
Providing information on common types of mental health concerns or even self-assessment quizzes can help them understand that what they suspect is true and that seeking treatment is the right step for them.
Displaying testimonials from people who received treatment at your center and are living better as a result also helps minimize the risk associated with help-seeking.
If people are uncertain whether spending the money on treatment is a good idea, minimizing the risk can help them see that it’s worth the investment in their emotional health.
Discuss Payment Options
Whether you accept insurance or not, provide payment options on your website. This could mean explaining your pricing and saying that payment options are available. It also could be listing out what those options look like (for example, a four-installment option or monthly payment plans). Again, be sure to provide contact information in case they want to talk to a person about payments.
Provide Information About Assistance
If you offer financial assistance, like sliding scales for treatment, or you’re aware of assistance programs outside of your center that can help people, make that information available. Be sure to provide contact information for programs outside of your center so they can start the necessary process to receive that help.
It may be risky to list alternatives to your treatment on your website. However, if you know some alternatives are available that are more cost-efficient and can help people, arm your admissions specialists with that information. That way, they aren’t turning people away from services because they can’t afford yours. You never want someone who needs mental health care to go without, so give them options if your center isn’t a good fit for them for whatever reason.
Focus on Values-Based Marketing
You became a mental health practitioner to help people, so values-based marketing will come naturally for you.
Values-based marketing puts the client at the forefront of your marketing efforts. It means focusing on your values and theirs instead of simply trying to sell something.
In the case of mental health services, using values-based marketing means focusing on giving people the information they need and connecting them with the services that will help them most, not just trying to get them at your center or practice.
Values-based marketing helps you build a caring relationship with your audience. It also has the side benefit of making those who can feel more connected with your treatment center and confident that it’s the right place to get the help they need.
Content Journey Can Help
Still not sure how to best address treatment costs in your marketing? Getting the wording just right can be tricky. Content Journey is here to help you attract the right people to your treatment center while still assisting others in getting the help they need. Contact us to learn more about our mental health marketing services.