Recommendations for therapists in the Bay Area
January 23, 2013 6:43 PM   Subscribe

Hi everyone, I am looking for recommendations for therapists in or around San Jose, CA (San Francisco would be too far) who take Kaiser insurance, or if this is even possible. I cannot change insurance, and the Kaiser therapist I talked to a year or two ago said they are allowed to prescribe medication and see patients a maximum of once a month, and I would prefer something weekly. If anyone knows of any therapists that somehow are allowed to take Kaiser or have reasonable rates for out-of-pocket pay, I'd be very grateful. Also want to add that I don't need a specialty therapist; this is just general life ennui stuff (some days worse than others). Thanks!
posted by madonna of the unloved to Health & Fitness (6 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I sadly don't have recommendations for you since I don't live in that area, but when it comes to Kaiser and therapy.... As far as I have been told by Kaiser, they are in-house only. Other folks cannot take their insurance, so that's not likely to work for you. You probably want to look for the words "sliding scale" when you're looking for out-of-pocket therapists, which is probably your best bet.
posted by jenfullmoon at 7:01 PM on January 23, 2013

I would call Kaiser and ask them this question, because you probably have access to several people who would be able to see you weekly who take your insurance!

That Kaiser therapist might have actually been a psychiatrist. Psychiatrists are medical doctors who can prescribe medications. Some psychiatrists can and will do therapy, but in managed care or insurance situations, they usually only do medication management because it's cheaper for other people without MDs to do therapy. Medication management would probably be seeing you for an initial intake appointment and then monthly (or less frequent) appointments to check up on your progress and make medication adjustments as needed.

So it might be easier to find someone to do weekly therapy than you think. I hope so!
posted by the young rope-rider at 7:02 PM on January 23, 2013 [2 favorites]

I have Kaiser and have used their therapists. I think it's in-house only. I have not encountered the "once a month" rule however. For RX you should be able to do renewals over the phone, possibly with your GP.
posted by zippy at 7:21 PM on January 23, 2013

After reading the young rope riders answer, I also think you may have seen a psychiatrist. There are way fewer of those at Kaiser than therapists, and I could see there being a once a month rule for them.
posted by zippy at 7:23 PM on January 23, 2013

Definitely think you were seeing a psychiatrist, or a psych nurse who also has an MSW, or something like that. People who can prescribe meds, who have any kind of psych specialty, are something we don't have nearly enough of.

Like the young rope-rider says, get your meds from a regular MD and get your therapy from someone who just does therapy and no prescribing.
posted by Fee Phi Faux Phumb I Smell t'Socks o' a Puppetman! at 7:30 PM on January 23, 2013

My experience is that Kaiser favors groups over individual therapy. I can finally afford an outside cognitive-behavioral therapist twice a month, but I used to go to California Institute of Integral Studies' clinics, where two of my sisters and I all had quite good experiences for the discounted price. If you want to sort out non-crisis stuff, a student therapist might work well. I saw someone in the Psy.D. program; my sisters, students studying for their MFT license.

Good luck out there!
posted by strivesc at 6:52 AM on January 24, 2013

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