It may take multiple outreach effort to get connected with a provider.
It is recommended that students contact multiple providers when they are seeking services:
- Students may speak with a provider and decide that they do not want to work with that person.
- A provider may not offer the specific services a student is seeking.
- Not all providers will have availability for new referrals.
- Providers may change the insurance they accept in their practice—even though they may still be listed on an insurance company search website, they may no longer take that insurance.
- Providers may not return calls.
Leaving Messages for Providers
It is likely that students will need to leave a voicemail when contacting providers. Students should be sure their own voicemail is set up and able to receive messages when contacting providers.
Some providers might indicate on their message whether or not they are accepting new referrals or indicate specific instructions for information that should be included in a message, or when someone can expect return contact. Be sure to listen to the information they provide.
- Your name
- Your phone number
- Mention you are a student at USF
- Service(s) you are seeking
- Primary issue(s) you would like to address in treatment
- Name of your insurance coverage
- How you obtained their contact information
- Availability for contact/appointments (if specific days/times needed)
- Repeat your name and phone number, slowly
“Hi, My name is XXXX, and my phone number is XXX-XXX-XXXX. I am a USF student, and I am looking for therapy to address XXXX and XXXX. I have XXXX insurance coverage, and I found your name on my insurance company provider website. I am looking for appointments on XXXX and XXXX, if available. Again, this is XXXX and my phone number is XXX-XXX-XXXX. I look forward to hearing back from you.”
Once contact has been made, some providers may gather screening/intake information on the phone, and others may want to schedule an in-person screening/intake.
Possible questions to ask a potential therapist:
- Can you share some of your experience working with XXXX and XXXX issues?
- What is your approach to working with these issues?
- Are you available for weekly appointments? Would I have the same appointment time each week?
- Where exactly is your office located?
- If using insurance:
I have XXXX insurance. Can you confirm that you are in-network provider? If you are out of network, what would the cost of an appointment be?
- If not using insurance:
Do you offer any discounts or fee arrangements, such as sliding scale?
- Do you maintain a wait list for your services (if the provider has indicated their practice is full)?
- Are there any other providers you would recommend for my treatment needs (if the provider has indicated their practice is full or if they indicate that they are not able to address a student's treatment needs)?