Term paper: Synopsis – interview with a clinical mental health counselor in your area. Be sure to select an LPC or LMHC, depending on your state license, and NOT a LCSW, LMFT, Psychologist, or Psychiatrist.
You should arrange to speak to the professional counselor for thirty minutes to an hour. You will be discussing the work setting (its mission and goals, organization and structure, clients served, etc.) and his or her position and job duties.
The Final Project is designed to introduce you to a day in the life of a clinical mental health counselor.
The content of your interview with this professional should allow you to answer the questions below. An exact typed transcript of your interview is not required for this assignment. It is expected that you will present their responses in narrative format to make the points reflected in your paper. You may find that you use some direct quotes, but will essentially be sharing your impressions from the interview in your paper.
The following is a list of questions that you will need to answer:
Part 1: The Organization
What is the name of the organization?
What is its mission and primary goals?
Who does it serve?
What services and programs does it provide?
What is the administrative structure of the organization?
What other types of professionals are employed in this organization?
How is it funded? What Insurance does the organization accept?
What types of opportunities for staff development are available?
How does it determine its clients’ needs and how does it evaluate its services and programs?
Part II: The Person
What is the professional counselor’s job title?
What does he or she do – types of services or programs offered?
What does a typical day look like? (number and types of clients, administrative activities)
What are the challenges of the counselor’s position?
What are the benefits of the counselor’s position?
What types of knowledge and skills are critical to performing well in this job?
How does the counselor think his/her workday is similar to or different from other mental healthcare professionals who work with the same client population?
What are some of the things the counselor does as a mental health counselor that he/she never expected to do?
What does the professional counselor do to prevent burnout?
What insurance panels does the individual use for reimbursement?
In your career as a clinical mental health counselor, you may be expected to join insurance panels in order to receive reimbursement from insurance companies that cover your clients, including filing for Medicaid reimbursement.
Part III: Managed Care
Part 1: Pick two managed care companies using the list below (or another of your choice) and determine how to become a provider for their clients. Complete the following for both companies you choose:
Name and address of the company
Contact person (if available)
Requirements to become a provider (training, experience, licensure, certification, etc.)
Types of forms need to be completed and/or submitted
Additional material needed to apply for provider status
Current availability (accepting positions, wait list, no openings?)
What specialty areas (if any) is this insurance company seeking?
Nation’s Largest Managed Care Companies (selected entries)
Magellan Behavioral Health
United Behavioral Health
Cigna Behavioral Health
Managed Health Network
American Psych Services
First Mental Health
PacifiCare Behavioral Health
Wellpoint Behavioral Health
VMC Behavioral Health Care
Horizon Behavioral Services
Blue Cross and Blue Shield
You can acquire information about these providers in several ways: (a) conduct an Internet search and locate these companies’ websites for provider information, (b) call their toll free numbers, or (c) check with area mental health professionals for information or contact numbers.
Part IV: Reflection
Reflect on the process of becoming a clinical mental health counselor and managed care provider. What have you learned as the result of this information-gathering activity? What challenges do you foresee?
Your paper should be written in APA format and be 10-12 pages in length, not counting title and reference pages.
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