Psychologists vs insurance: “Let’s act before the ship sinks”

However, the situation is simple: as for the assistant doctors, the services of the assistant psychotherapists can be invoiced by the person who supervises them and who is responsible for the therapy. For physician assistants, this is a physician; for assistant psychotherapists, a psychologist-psychotherapist.

Read also: “More proximity and less waiting”: the new reimbursement system for shrinks

Since July 1, 2022, psychologists-psychotherapists have been allowed to invoice basic insurance. It is moreover on this principle that all the postgraduate training of doctors and psychotherapists in Switzerland is based. This principle has been acquired and put into practice for many years.

However, since psychologists-psychotherapists can invoice to the basic insurance, certain Santésuisse insurance companies refuse to pay on the basis of legal bickering. According to this umbrella, the legal bases would be lacking. Not all Santésuisse health insurers agree: some pay, like Swica and Visana, others refuse.

Read also: Why psychologists file complaints against health insurers

In short, it’s chaos. A chaos to the detriment of the patients who finally find themselves without a therapist or forced to change. For psychologists-psychotherapists in training, the situation is very difficult. There are nearly 1,500 of them. Some of them have lost their jobs and their patients, and find themselves in the uncertainty of being able to complete their postgraduate training.

They thus become unemployable, faced with the refusal to pay by certain funds. Some of them logically had to take the path of unemployment. A totally absurd situation: the state unemployment funds find themselves bearing costs for which basic health insurance now refuses to enter into the matter when they paid these benefits before and should therefore not spend a penny additional. And this while leaving vulnerable people behind.

While the field of health is sorely lacking in trained professionals, it is more than ever essential to integrate the next generation into our health system in a sustainable manner.

It should be remembered that psychologists-psychotherapists in training must first obtain a master’s degree in psychology, before specializing by means of postgraduate training of four to six years, during which they must in particular acquire practical experience of psychotherapy.

A breach is forming. Let’s act before it’s too late and the whole ship sinks. You don’t even have to find new solutions, just have the good sense to restore a system that has always worked. In the name of health and training. For patients.

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