Why mental health therapists should send professional invoices
Whether you work in a large, specialized mental health clinic, or in your own private practice – your patients all require personalized medical treatment and care. As a result, your invoices must be able to detail the often complex treatment and therapy you provide, while also being easily understandable to your patients and their caregivers.
In addition, you need to provide all the information required by their health insurance providers so your patients can be properly reimbursed.
An organized, well-designed invoice also reflects your image as a mental health professional, and creates trust and confidence in your expertise.
Once you've downloaded your free invoice template, you'll need to customize it to fit your specific business. Here are the 10 key things to include on your invoice:
- Title and Description: Name the project and briefly describe what type of work your client is being invoiced for.
- Company Details: Add your company name, address, phone number, and logo to the top-right corner.
- Customer Details: Under "Bill To", add your customer's name, address, and contact information.
- Invoice Number: Include a unique invoice number to help you track down this invoice in the future. You can format this based on sequence and customer. For example, if you're sending your very first customer their first invoice, the invoice number could be 001-001.
- Dates: Include the date when your invoice has been issued and the date when payment is due.
- Line Item: Add individual line items for each unique good or service you provided. For each line item, include a brief description, quantity, individual unit price, and total price.
- Subtotal: Add up the subtotal of your goods or services, before tax has been applied.
- Tax: Indicate the tax rate applied to the subtotal. This is legally required to provide on invoices, and your rate may differ depending on where you run your business.
- Total: Outline the total amount due from the customer, after tax.
- Notes: Include any additional info your customer should know, including terms of service and payment terms (for example, payments are due 30 days after the invoice has been issued).
- Select an invoice template from our selection of specially designed mental health therapy templates in a variety of styles and colors
- Download the invoice template in the format you prefer – Word, Excel, PDF, Google Docs, or Google Sheets. It’s free!
- Add your name, clinic phone number, email address, and any other pertinent contact information
- If you have a logo and website address, add it in – along with any area you specialize in, such as pediatric therapy
- Add your patient’s name and current contact information, and if applicable, their health insurance company information
- Generate a unique invoice number, and if applicable, a patient code
- Insert the date of the invoice and the date the payment is due
- List all the diagnostic, treatment, and therapy services you provided, along with descriptions of each and the appropriate fee. For therapy sessions, indicate whether you charge an hourly fee or a flat rate
- Add and subtract lines to customize the format to your needs. You might want to use some space to insert notes on tests or medications, as well as include all the information needed to submit health insurance claims
- Calculate the total cost, including applicable tax, and enter the total
- Add your payment terms, including the methods of payment you accept
- You have a particularly close relationship with your patients, so if appropriate, add a comment about their therapy or their progress, or to wish them well if they have finished working with you
- Save a copy for your patient records – and give a copy to your patient and/or their caregiver
When is the right time to send an invoice to your mental health therapy patients?
When to give your patient your invoice depends upon the patient’s condition and the length and complexity of the therapy you provide. If the invoice is for a psychiatric assessment or preliminary diagnosis, many therapists give the invoice to the patient on completion of the session.
If you are providing ongoing therapy, it can be best to work out a regular payment schedule instead of creating an invoice for each individual session.
This keeps your revenue flowing in and creates manageable, regular payments for your patients, especially if they need to send the invoice to their insurance provider to be compensated.
Invoicing tips for mental health therapists
If you need to charge for any additional expenses while working with a patient, such as travel, include an expense report along with the receipts when you send in your invoice. Include all the details so your patient knows why they are being billed.
Use numbered invoices
Numbered invoices help you keep track of your patients and their therapy. Adding a patient code can also help manage invoices issued for ongoing therapy for an individual patient.
Include important patient care notes
Make use of the extra room a flexible invoice template provides to add important notes for the patient, such as medication or therapy changes, or to celebrate important therapy milestones.
Accept a variety of payment methods
The way we pay for goods and services has evolved, and therapy services are no different. Make it convenient for your patients to pay you by accepting e-Transfers, debit cards, and other online payment methods.