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6 Best Online Psychiatrist Platforms of 2023
Online Psychiatry or telepsychiatry allows mental health patients to talk directly to a psychiatrist and get the medications for their mental health conditions. This is different from talk therapy sessions with a therapist or psychologist. In online psychiatry, people can get in touch with psychiatrists who are doctors specialized in mental, behavioral and emotional disorders.
Instead of personally visiting a psychiatrist, you can speak with them in person and avail online mental health services at your convenience. A psychiatrist can combine various forms of therapy with prescribed medications, unlike a licensed therapist who can only provide mental health counseling services.
Choosing the Best Online Psychiatry Services
Online psychiatry can provide high-quality psychiatric treatment for care seekers, especially in areas with shortages or trouble accessing insurance networks. Given the growing list of available telepsychiatry platforms, we need to consider some essential factors while choosing the best one.
Cost for initial evaluation and follow-ups
Qualifications of psychiatrists on the platforms and what do they specialize in
Whether insurance is accepted or not
Availability of the psychiatrist
Added features of the online platform like talk therapy sessions along with psychiatrist's consultation etc.
Whether the online platform meets appropriate federal, state or industry regulations
If there is any third-party certification
Each online psychiatry service recommended in this list has a network of licensed and board- certified psychiatrists. Here are the six best online psychiatry or telepsychiatry services.
Brightside provides personalized treatment for patients with anxiety and depression. The treatment may comprise psychotherapy and prescribed medications. Brightside treats a range of mental conditions related to anxiety and depression such as phobias, generalized anxiety disorder, seasonal affective disorder (SAD), social anxiety disorder, panic disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), major depressive disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD), insomnia, bipolar II and postpartum depression.
Once you sign up, you will be matched with a psychiatrist or a psychiatric nurse practitioner (NP) in your state. If you are matched with psychiatric NP and wish to consult a psychiatrist, you need to contact the support team and request a change. Brightside offers a mobile application only for iOS devices. Android device users can access the platform on a browser and video calls can be scheduled via Zoom.
Brightside accepts insurance and the users can use pharmacy copay. The care seeker needs to create an account and enter the insurance information to verify coverage. Brightside offers three plans and the cost breakdown of each plan is given below −
$95 per month and $45 for the initial month plus $15 per medication.
Medication is sent by mail
$299 per month and $249 for the first month
Unlimited messaging and four monthly video sessions with a licensed therapist
Medication plus Therapy
$349 per month and $249 for the initial month plus $15 per medication.
Medication plus consultation and therapy sessions
Teladoc is a highly accessible, affordable and easy-to-use network of well-qualified mental health specialists. It is one of the oldest telehealth companies and offers access to doctors who are specialized in mental health therapy and psychiatry. Board-certified psychiatrists are available seven days a week from 7 am to 9 pm and appointments can be scheduled within one week after completion of a mental health screening questionnaire.
A messaging centre is available for care seekers on the website and app. The appointments are pay-per-visit and this may be costly for people who require frequent sessions if the insurance does not cover the service.
Teladoc accepts 60 different insurance plans and if you have insurance benefits, you can pay a copay for visit. The costs for the plans are as follows −
$99 per session for all therapy appointments
$299 for the initial psychiatry consultation and $119 per session for follow-up
MDLive provides services for both medical and mental health care. It is available for children aged 10 and above with parental consent. Online appointments can take place over the phone or video chat and even if a psychiatrist lives in a different city, the prescriptions can be sent to a local pharmacy for pick up. MDLive psychiatrists offer evening and weekend appointments which may be inconvenient for some people. You need to create an account and answer a few questions to browse the directory of psychiatrists.
The therapy and medication services can be availed via a pay-per-session model and several major insurance plans are accepted. Therapy appointments can cost $108 while psychiatry appointments cost $284 for the initial evaluation and then $108 for subsequent sessions.
LiveHealth Online are one of the budget-friendly online psychiatry services. It provides a wider network of psychiatrists with a user-friendly and comprehensive online platform which covers the most common psychiatric conditions. Psychiatric services are available for adults only and mental health services are available in 50 states across the United States. The care seeker can select a doctor from the vetted list. Evening and weekend appointments are available for people who have a tight working schedule and immediate communication access is provided on-call and through a mobile app.
LiveHealth follows a pay-per-visit model with no monthly charges. The pricing is comparatively low even without insurance. One of the main disadvantages of this service is that it doesn't take many insurance plans as compared to some other online psychiatry platforms.
The cost is as follows −
$80-$95 for talk therapy sessions which depends on your therapist’s level of experience
$175 for the initial consultation with a psychiatrist and $75 for each subsequent visit
Doctor on Demand
Doctor on Demand has a user-friendly mobile application where you can filter your results based on appointment availability, language and focus area of treatment. Once you download the app, you have to enter your details and the app will use your location to find the board-certified psychiatrists in your state. It offers one of the fastest initial access times and you can get an appointment within as little as five minutes. One of the flip sides to this feature is that the same psychiatrist may not be available for follow-up.
You can easily verify the insurance benefits and confirm how much your session will cost. There are no subscription fees and the costs for each session are as follows −
$299 for a 45-minute initial appointment and 15-minute follow-up sessions cost $129 each.
A 25-minute therapy session cost $129
A 50-minute session cost $179.
Amwell offers online psychiatry services along with other medical services with a direct-to- patient communication model. This collaborative care approach enables the communication between your psychiatrist and primary care doctor. Psychiatrists on this platform can treat patients with mental health conditions like eating disorders, bipolar disorder, anxiety disorders, cognitive disorders, depression, insomnia, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
While signing up, you can enter your health insurance information to see if you qualify for partially or fully covered appointments. An initial consultation costs $279 and a follow-up cost $109 each session.
The best online psychiatry services should combine accessibility via wider insurance networks or economical payment plans and should be user-friendly. Moreover, it should have an excellent network of expert psychiatrists and should be budget-friendly. You can compare these online psychiatrist platforms and take a wise decision.
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