Frequently Asked Questions

If you have more questions about how Alma works, you can always reach out to us!

For people seeking care

Finding a therapist

What type of care can I get through Alma?

Alma connects you with clinicians who provide therapy for individuals, couples, families, children and adolescents, and medication management.

What is a consultation?

A consultation is not a first appointment — it’s a short conversation to help you determine if a therapist is a good fit for ongoing care.

No two therapists approach consultations exactly the same way, but you can expect it to feel like a brief, two-sided interview. They will want to learn a bit more about your concerns and background, and you’ll get the chance to ask questions about their experiences and approach to care.

You may not click with the first therapist you meet, and that’s okay! Note what you did or didn’t like and use that information to inform your future searches.

When will I hear back about my consultation request?

Many therapists at Alma offer instant booking for consultations, so you can find a time that works for both of you directly on their profile.

Therapists who don't offer instant booking typically respond to consultation requests within two business days. If you don't hear back within that time frame, we recommend reaching out to another therapist at Alma who fits your needs.

How will I know if a therapist is a good fit?

Therapy is about exploring behaviors, emotions, and thought patterns to help you better understand yourself and make changes that will serve your life and goals. Some therapists take an unstructured approach, allowing you to explore whatever is on your mind and gain insights over time (i.e., psychodynamic therapy). Other therapists use a goal-oriented method (i.e., cognitive behavioral therapy), which may include homework between sessions. And some use a combination of both!

Based on how you’re most comfortable learning and communicating, one approach may be better suited to your needs than another. Consultations will help you determine what’s best.

Can I see a therapist who is licensed in a different state?

Therapy licenses aren't like driver's licenses — they don’t cross state lines. To provide care of any kind, your therapist must be licensed in the state where you are currently located. Because of this, it’s important to enter the correct zip code when you’re searching the Alma directory.

Paying for care

What types of payment do therapists at Alma accept?

Therapists at Alma set their own policies around payment, including their rates for sessions and insurance companies they work with. Our directory will help you find a therapist who fits your budget and health care coverage.

Can I use my insurance to pay for therapy?

Yes! And most therapists at Alma accept insurance. Visit the Alma directory and select your insurance from the drop-down menu to see available therapists who offer in-network care.

How do I know if mental health care is covered by my insurance?

If you are insured through Aetna, Cigna, Optum, Oscar, Oxford, or UnitedHealthcare, you can use our free cost estimator tool to check your mental health care coverage. We’ll share your payment responsibility and information about your deductible (the amount you’ll need to pay out of pocket before your insurance kicks in).

If you're insured by a different insurance company, you can still browse the directory to see in-network therapists.

Learn more about calculating the cost of therapy →

What if I don’t have insurance coverage?

Therapists at Alma are also available for out-of-network care. Therapists set their own rate for care, but many work on a sliding scale — meaning they may choose to lower their fee per session based on someone’s income. Be sure to note what you’re comfortable paying per session in your consultation request.

Starting Therapy

How and where will sessions take place?

That's up to you. We have therapists who offer sessions in person, virtually, and a combination of both! Decide what's best for you based on your schedule and personal preferences, then use the directory filters to narrow down your search.

Every therapist will have their own policies and procedures about how they communicate with clients between sessions, but most use text or email.

How often will I meet with my therapist?

You and your therapist will work together to decide how often to meet for therapy. Once a week is typical, especially in the beginning of care when you’re still getting to know each other.

What role does Alma play in the relationship with my therapist?

Alma does not employ therapists or dictate how they run their practices. Therapists join Alma to get additional support — like help working with insurance companies, submitting claims, and connecting with new clients like you!

On the flip side, Alma also takes the confusion out of paying for therapy and managing appointments. Once you start seeing a therapist, you may receive notification emails from Alma about invoices and upcoming sessions.

For clinicians interested in joining Alma

Becoming a member

How do I become a member?

Fill out this form to set up a call with one of our Community Growth Managers. We’ll share more information about Alma and answer any question you may have about membership.

Are there any practice requirements for members?

Your practice is your own, and how you run it is always up to you. Our membership structure is built around how Alma can serve you — not the other way around. You’ll have complete control over your practice and can decide on areas like:

  • The number of clients you see each week
  • Your out-of-pocket rates
  • Therapy modalities

To further our mission of simplifying access to affordable mental health care, all new members are required to join our insurance program and get credentialed with at least one of our payer partners.

Can I join Alma with a limited license?

No. At this time, Alma is only available to clinicians who are fully licensed.

Accepting insurance

Am I required to take insurance?

We designed Alma’s insurance program to be easy and financially rewarding for our members. To further our mission of simplifying access to affordable mental health care, all new members are required to join our insurance program and get credentialed with at least one of our payer partners — Aetna, Cigna, or Optum.

What if I’m already credentialed with Aetna, Optum, or Cigna?

Members need to be credentialed under Alma’s Tax ID, regardless of their current individual credential status. Once you’ve been credentialed under Alma's Tax ID, you can add your eligible clients to the Alma portal to access enhanced rates for their sessions.

How do I submit claims?

Members can submit claims directly through the Alma portal — just enter the relevant session codes and hit send. Alma takes care of invoicing your clients and collecting copays.

The only time you’ll need to invoice an insurance client directly is to collect payment for a cancellation or missed visit, should that be a part of your practice’s cancellation policy.

Is virtual care telemedicine covered?

Yes! Telemedicine and teletherapy will continue to be covered under the same reimbursement rates as in-person therapy, subject to state regulations and coverage limits.

Does Alma support clinicians who are licensed in multiple states?

Yes! Through Alma, you can get credentialed and accept insurance clients anywhere you’re already licensed.

Caseload management

Does Alma take a cut of my fee for cash-pay clients?

No. We charge a monthly fee for membership that gives you access to all of Alma’s benefits. The income from your cash-pay clients stays with you.

Can I accept referrals outside of Alma?

Alma is designed to support your entire practice. We’ll help you manage all of your clients — whether they come to you through Alma or not.


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