We value restorative justice. We explore the harm done by those in power, provide support to our communities who were harmed, and prevent future damage. In the context of Simple Practice policy changes, our duty is to address our concerns publicly to inform our fellow clinicians, community members, and the decision-makers at Simple Practice.
We are committed to fostering a conscious community and engaging in community care, activism, and advocacy. Advocacy starts with transparency, honesty, and open communication. By providing our response publicly, we hope to inspire clinicians who are weighing decisions regarding the financial and social impact of our choices in electronic health records. This public response also serves as a reminder to the community of our efforts to provide community-focused care.
We are committed to creating accessible mental health resources for people, regardless of identity or economic status. The increase in cost of using the Simple Practice electronic health record will have a trickling effect on the costs of counseling. Whether we decrease the amount of pay our clinicians receive, decrease the number of clinicians we employ, or increase session rates for clients, a change in any overhead costs for running a business changes our bottom line while broaching our values. Staying with Simple Practice may prevent us from engaging with our clients and community who may not be able to afford even a slight increase in session fees, and that is not the way forward for TGM.
We are committed to actively protecting the safety and wellness of our team members, clients, and communities.
Electronic Health Records Management Systems
What They Are
Electronic Health Records Management Systems (EHRMS) are where we privately store client information, paperwork, payments/billing, client portal, etc. It also controls how we meet over telehealth systems. Though there are costs associated with each management system, our biggest priority is protecting the privacy of our clients.
Our Conflict with Simple Practice’s Updated Policies and Price Changes
At this time, Simple Practice’s price increases have severely negatively impacted our future ability to provide sustainable resources and support for our clients and their clinicians. Essentially, Simple Practice’s rates are increasing by essentially 100%, nearly doubling our monthly fees.
As we consider the financial effects of the increased cost of using Simple Practice, we cannot disregard our clinicians as well as our clients and community members. In order to serve our clients, the wellness of clinicians is of the utmost importance. This wellness includes employment and contract-work that provides financial compensation that is proportionate to the work performed as well as job security.
Despite our continued efforts to establish connection with representatives from Simple Practice, it is blatantly clear that there is no interest in collaborating with The Gracious Mind to customize plans to serve low income clients. Lower cost plans only include certain features, while high cost plans include more useful and necessary features; plans become more costly based on the number of employees, which inherently discourages the growth of business. How can we as providers grow sustainably, when our necessary resources continue to up their costs and in turn, further add barriers to accessing affordable health care for all communities.
In a capitalist system, we’re voting with our dollars, and continuing to use Simple Practice would be in direct violation of our mission and values. Instead, we will continue to provide accessible, affordable care to all who come to TGM as we charge forth, embodying the values highlighted above.
Our Solution: TherapyNotes
TherapyNotes is a fellow EHRMS found in the mental health industry and the new platform we are migrating The Gracious Mind to, effective May 1, 2022. Discover why we’re choosing to use this platform over its competitors.
- TherapyNotes (TN) provides integrated telehealth at a significantly lower price point.
- TN provides more consistent support for clinicians operating an EHRMS. Meaning, the support provided to our team when it comes to onboarding new clients, sharing documents, and managing clinician scheduling is consistently more timely and more comprehensive in providing quick and effective solutions.
- The TN user interface is on-par with Simple Practice and provides an ease in navigating the client and clinician portals, including accessing notes and appointment reminders.
Moving Forward, Together
Our next steps as a team is to transition our team and their clients to TherapyNotes as seamlessly as possible, while providing training opportunities for our team to learn the ins and outs of the program, so that they can instill their knowledge upon their clients. Our administrative team will also be available to support our clients and staff throughout the process. It is our hope that we will have migrated TGM to TherapyNotes by May 1, 2022.
As always, we are profoundly grateful for the support of our community as we continue to grow mindfully and sustainably. While these decisions are not always easy, it is in fact always easy for us to think and act with our clinicians and their clients well-being in mind.
If there are questions, please contact us today.