First of all, let me congratulate you If you are a therapist in private practice. From my experience of speaking with over hundred psychologists in private practice, it is incredibly difficult decision for many to take the leap of faith and leave the comfort of a “job” and follow their entrepreneurial instincts to starting their own “business”. Starting your own business means branding – naming your practice and getting that right logo with the perfect color scheme, getting out of your comfort zone and advertising your practice, getting yourself listed on various therapy listing websites, managing your practice – appointments and billing and invoices, filing taxes and maintaining books and filing for insurance claims. 😮💨
For the brave ones, we have compiled a list of our favourite mental health softwares, EMRs and EHRs. Lets dive in;
Best mental health software for a therapist website
Marketing as a private practitioner is fun for a few therapists like the one’s who pop-up frequently on your TikTok and Instagram feeds, while it can be hard for the ones who are more introvert like me. The most critical element in marketing is getting the right website. The right website can be instrumental in getting you more inquiries from your prospective clients. A few things you must look at while selecting a software for your website are ease of building and maintaining a website, SEO, HIPAA compliant inquiry form, and last but not the least the design. I have seen many therapists spend thousands of dollars to make their websites fancy. I would say, don’t be so fixated on design and animations because really it’s the performance that matters. Here are two of our favourite website softwares,
PracticeID Websites – Modern and HIPAA compliant
PracticeID has just launched in 2023. And we are very excited to see a website builder solely focussed on therapists in private practice. They swear by the performance of their websites and we were happy to see that they are best in SEO by far. Another beneficial feature is the HIPAA compliant inquiry form. We love the modern approach. And they also have a free forever plan. Check them out at – https://practiceid.com/.
Brighter Vision Websites – The OG
Brighter Vision has been around since over a decade and they really started pushing the quality of websites for therapists ever since their launch in 2011. They have tried their hands at other things like social media automation etc. but their star product has been websites. In 2020 EverCommerce acquired BrighterVision and there has been limited innovation since then. But we still love their websites and hope that they innovate more often. Check them out at – https://www.brightervision.com/.
A word of caution, we would suggest you stay away from your mental health EMR’s free website (like Simple Practice or Therapy Sites) because really they are not optimised for performance. Don’t get me wrong, but these softwares are better at practice management than at websites. Websites these days are highly sophisticated and you should use a specialised software for that.
Best mental health software for practice management
Once you have your web presence sorted and you are getting a steady stream of clients, you will face challenges with managing your practice. Think about calendar management, appointment booking, billing and invoicing etc. There are plenty of EMR and EHR available on the market but a few stand out. Most of these EMRs are quite generic and can be used for a private practice, a group practice or a behavioral health clinic.
Simple Practice – The omnipresent getting expensive
I won’t believe you if you tell me that if you have never heard of Simple Practice before. They have been pioneers in EHR software for behavioral health. While they have a comprehensive solution – calendar, scheduling, appointment booking, client portal, telehealth and video calls, documentation, invoices and billing, payments, insurance and claim filing; BUT they have been constantly increasing prices. And as a private practitioner these abrupt increases might not be sustainable! Check them out at – https://www.simplepractice.com/.
TherapyNotes – The Inflexible OG
TherapyNotes has been there forever as well. And the good thing is that it seems less technical and it works. I have found it fast and responsive. The CC fees are also among the lowest. And yes, this one is decently priced.
You will find TherapyNotes rigid though – less features, limited and non-customisable progress note, intake and treatment plan paperwork formats. Further, the schedule view is pretty old school and almost hurts looking at. They are at – https://www.therapynotes.com/.
Between Simple Practice and TherapyNotes, here is the verdict from one of the Reddit threads;
Best mental health software for psychological testing
It has been established that more evidence leads to better clinical outcomes. Using psychological testing routinely in your practice can help you diagnose the underlying illness better, base your treatment to the progress the client is making, and improve client’s confidence in the therapeutic process. While this space was dominated by the large corporations, like Pearson and PARInc, whose solutions are prohibitively expensive for therapists in private practice, new age startups are not only challenging these companies but also modernising the entire psychological testing journey.
PsyPack Outcome Tools – Intuitive and HIPAA compliant
PsyPack Assessments come loaded with a large library of assessments. They have a very minimalist user interface and is very easy to use. Despite the minimalism, it comes in with some very powerful and innovative features like automatic scheduling and repeating of assessments after fixed intervals, tracking progress in a single interactive graph, comprehensive reports with DIY suggestions and psycho-education. Check them out at – https://psypack.com/.
If you are at a stage where you are ready to embrace measurement based care, think no further, sign up for your PsyPack now.
NovoPsych – The OG
NovoPsych is the OG software for psychological testing from Australia. While the library of assessment is large, the software itself is dated and lacks modern features. It is also unclear if it is HIPAA compliant or not. If you are not in the US and you have a limited usage, NovoPsych will not disappoint. Here you go – https://novopsych.com.au/.
Innovative mental health softwares
Heard – Mental Health Software for Finances
Heard is a software-enabled company that helps therapists with their finances, more specifically bookkeeping, taxes, and payroll. Heard states they can save you 60 hours per year in financial record keeping, which means you can use that extra hour or so per week finishing your notes or making money in sessions.
With tonnes of VC funding, Heard is sure making some heads turn. They are at – https://www.joinheard.com/.
Upheal – AI Progress Notes
Taking notes can be daunting. Well, AI is here to rescue. Upheal securely records the therapy session, automatically generates a transcript, and then use it as a basis for AI models to create progress notes and insights.
Their early access program is live, go check them out at – https://www.upheal.io/.
Delegating mechanical work to a software can really help you make time for the more important parts of your work. If you are a therapist in private practice, I will highly encourage you to adopt technology in this day-and-age of telehealth to stay ahead of the curve.
If you found our list of behavioral health softwares useful, do share it with your therapist friends.