Make What You’re Worth: How to Set Your Psychotherapy Session Rates in Private Practice

NOTE: This research is based on 2017 data. Here is the latest version based on 2018 data. 

Also, check out our new Rate Calculator!  Simply answer a few questions, and get a customized report with amount you need to charge to cover to your monthly practice expenses. 


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In addition to providing tips and guidance on how to set your rates, we also included the median therapy session rates for all 50 states and metropolitan areas in 2017. Based on over six million sessions billed through SimplePractice for CPT code 90837 (psychotherapy), this information provides an extremely reliable way to see how your rates compare to others in your state or region. Here’s a summary of some of the findings from this section

Median therapy session rates by state

Nationwide, the median rate for a therapy session in 2017 was $120. The rates by state varied considerably, ranging from $70 in Florida to $160 in Alaska.

  • Five states (Florida, Indiana, Michigan, Missouri, and Ohio) had median rates at or below $90.
  • 10 states (Connecticut, New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Alabama. Maryland, California, Oregon, and Wyoming) had rates at $120.
  • Seven states (Alaska, Iowa, Illinois, New Jersey, Arkansas, District of Columbia, and Hawaii) had median rates at or above $150.

average therapy session rates by state

Billed from January 1 through December 31, 2017, using CPT code 90837 for Psychotherapy. Billed for 50 to 60-minute sessions.

Median therapy session rates by metropolitan area

Among the metropolitan areas we included, the highest rates were:

  • Miami-Fort Lauderdale-West Palm Beach, FL, $250
  • New York-Newark-Jersey City, NY-NJ-PA, $175
  • San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA, $165

And the lowest rates were:

  • Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford, FL $68
  • Detroit-Warren-Dearborn, MI $75
  • Minneapolis-St. Paul-Bloomington, MN-WI $75

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Another way to think about setting your rate is to calculate all your practice expenses and then determine your rate based on this information. For example, your rates may be too low based on the amount of your monthly business expenses (e.g., rent, liability insurance, continuing education, and practice management software).

In order to truly have a successful practice, you need to be profitable, so we created a downloadable calculator to help you determine a session rate that will cover your monthly expenses.

SimplePractice is a top-reviewed practice management platform, made specifically for small business owners in the health and wellness space. Unlike other systems, which try to make you conform to their way of doing things, we believe that you should have the freedom to run your practice the way you’d like. Our industry-leading feature set includes secure messaging, customizable paperless intake forms, a template library, free appointment reminders (SMS, email, & voice), electronic claim filing, billing and invoicing, a beautiful client portal for online appointment booking, and more. Sign up for a 30-day FREE trial today!

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