“As a therapist, one of the most fulfilling parts of my job is all the paperwork!”
…said no therapist ever.
Few outside the field can truly appreciate the amount of admin work that is involved with being a therapist. Everything from progress notes to submitting insurance claims can add additional burdens to a therapist’s already full plate.
Treatment plans — extensive documents that design and monitor a client’s therapeutic process — are among those responsibilities that therapists are tasked with.
While there are many ways to approach a treatment plan, they typically include some combination of the following:
- Basic client demographic information
- Treatment and assessment history
- Presenting concerns and diagnoses
- Therapeutic modalities and interventions to be utilized
- Treatment goals and objectives
- Progress and outcome notes
Treatment plans are a collaborative process between therapist and client, and should capture both the therapist’s recommendations as well as the client’s perspective. Treatment plans will ideally strengthen the therapeutic relationship and reinforce informed decision-making by helping the provider and client align on the goals of their work together.
Do All Therapists Need to Create Treatment Plans?
Whether or not you, as a therapist, are required to develop treatment plans for your clients will ultimately depend on state and federal laws around psychological record keeping where you are practicing, as well as the requirements of the insurers and/or public agencies that you work with.
Most insurance companies will require that clinicians submit treatment plans in order to cover their services. What is specifically requested from you may vary, so it’s important to verify the expectations of each insurer you are paneled with.
Still, some therapists — particularly those in private practice, who are not beholden to any particular agency or insurer — may opt not to create a traditional treatment plan, especially in instances where a diagnosis may not be appropriate or needed, as treatment plans are often guided by clinical diagnoses.
That said, even if you do not accept insurance, it’s important to note that treatment plans can be a crucial form of documentation, especially in the event of legal or ethical proceedings that involve your client and, in some cases, you as a provider.
We’ll outline more of the benefits of treatment plans below.
What is a ‘Wiley Treatment Planner’?
Rather than writing a treatment plan entirely from scratch, Wiley Treatment Planners offer templatized and customizable options that make treatment planning less cumbersome for clinicians.
Wiley Treatment Planners are organized by presenting problems (or diagnoses). From there, you can select different behaviors, goals, objectives, and interventions associated with that diagnosis.
Wiley will then create a treatment plan for your client based on your selections, which you can then edit and customize to suit your client’s individual needs.
The Benefits of Using Wiley Treatment Planners
Saving Time: The most obvious benefit of using a Wiley Treatment Planner is saving time. Using WTP’s prewritten options allows therapists to focus on their direct interactions with clients, rather than spending unnecessary time on researching interventions and drafting the plan itself.
Ease of Documentation: Having a template for documentation can make it easier for therapists to keep their records organized and streamlined.
Therapist and Client Protection: In the event of legal or ethical proceedings, proper documentation can help protect both client and therapist alike, creating a cohesive and accessible record of the diagnoses and assessments, therapeutic process, and interventions utilized.
Meeting Agency and Insurers’ Expectations: Many insurance companies, and even some state and federal agencies, will require treatment plans to cover your services. Wiley Treatment Planners are designed with this exact function in mind, and are widely used for this purpose.
Providing Evidence-Based Care: The interventions recommended by WTP are research-backed, ensuring that the treatment plan you develop is evidence-based and appropriate for your client’s specific diagnoses and goals.
More Effective Communication: While your client may understand why they are seeking therapy, an effective treatment plan can help a provider communicate the “how” of therapy by outlining the specific goals and their corresponding interventions.
Stronger Collaboration: If your client is working with other providers, or you're working under a supervisor, an accessible treatment plan can ensure that everyone on your client’s care team is working together in a unified and effective manner.
Customizable and Individualized: WTPs are customizable and can be edited to address your client’s specific needs and concerns. A versatile document is crucial to ensure that the care your client receives is personalized.
Where Can I Get a ‘Wiley Treatment Planner’?
Platforms like Alma offer this functionality as an optional part of their membership for therapists.
You can also visit the official Wiley website to learn more.