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  • Writer's pictureDr. Heather Violante, PsyD

Increasing Access to Mental Healthcare Across State Lines Through Online Therapy



Millions of Americans struggle with mental health issues. As a result of the pandemic, online therapy also known as telehealth or teletherapy became not only more widely available, but preferred by many clients and therapists. But what if you move to another state or you are referred to a therapist that practices in a different state? Interstate licensing compacts, such as PSYPACT, addresses that issue.


What is PSYPACT?


PSYPACT is an interstate licensing compact that allows licensed psychologists (mental health therapists with Ph.D. or Psy.D. credentials) to legally and ethically provide teletherapy (online video therapy) across state lines in participating PSYPACT states


In the state of Florida, PSYPACT was enacted on July 1, 2023 and, as a result, has given psychologists the flexibility to provide therapy across the country. As a psychologist with the Authority to Practice Interjurisdictional Telepsychology (APIT) from the PSYPACT Commission, Dr. Heather Violante, Psy.D. provides telehealth to adults living in Florida and New York (where she is licensed), as well as to adults in PSYPACT participating states.


Why is PSYPACT Important for Counseling Across State Lines?


Interstate licensing compacts like PSYPACT are so important when it comes to increasing access to mental healthcare. There are many benefits to both the client and the provider, and it solves a lot of problems that prevent people from getting the care they need.


How Teletherapy and PSYPACT Address Common Barriers to Mental Healthcare

Common barriers to accessing quality mental healthcare include:


  1. Cost: With a greater choice in therapists, fewer overhead costs for therapists (commuting, office rent), and no travel costs for clients, teletherapy is a great way to access therapy and save money on traveling/commuting. And since teletherapy has become widely available, several insurance companies cover teletherapy services.

  2. Stigma: Teletherapy gives you the option to get care from your own home so privacy from public spaces is guaranteed. Increased comfortability and a less intimidating environment means more individuals can feel comfortable seeing a therapist. If you can’t find a quiet, private place at home, you can have your teletherapy session from your office, your car, or even in a secluded space in your garden, basically wherever you choose. 

  3. Busy Schedule: Now you can squeeze in a 45 - 60 minute therapy session during your day. You don’t have to take traveling into account and can easily fit in appointments around busy schedules. 

  4. Geographical Limitations: If you live in a remote or rural area where there is limited access to mental healthcare, you can see a therapist anywhere in your state. And because of PSYPACT, you can see a licensed PSYPACT psychologist in any PSYPACT enrolled state, offering even more choices in therapists. If you happen to be referred to an out-of-state psychologist you might like to work with who is credentialed with PSYPACT and you reside in a PSYPACT enrolled state then this even opens up the opportunity for you to be able to receive therapeutic services by this psychologist whom, otherwise, might not have been able to work with you without the presence of PSYPACT. 

  5. Lack of Therapists Available: If you live in a place where there are few therapists specializing in the specific area you need, you might have to wait a long time to see them until they have availability. Teletherapy and PSYPACT give you the opportunity to see a therapist who has availability even sooner, even if they are in a different state from you. PSYPACT and other interstate compacts open your pool of available therapists without having to travel.


Benefits of PSYPACT for Clients:


There are many people who can benefit from PSYPACT. If you live in one state and work in another and they are both PSYPACT enrolled states, you can have virtual sessions with your psychologist from either state. Many people travel for work, and rather than disrupting your therapy routine, you can have continuous mental healthcare. This is also helpful for college students who have residences in multiple states. In Florida, snowbirds often live in another state for half of the year, and PSYPACT allows for continuation of care.


You can rest assured that the PSYPACT psychologist you work with is a safe and valid therapist. The process for psychologists to become certified with PSYPACT is a thorough application process. The process reviews the psychologist’s credentials, verifies they are licensed, and reviews their education and professional background. To find out if your therapist has an active Authority to Practice Interjurisdictional Telepsychology (APIT) credential granted from the PSYPACT Commission, visit: https://www.verifypsypact.org/PsypactDirectory


Benefits of PSYPACT for Psychologists:


Rather than getting individual licenses in all or multiple states, which can be cumbersome, expensive, impractical, and time-consuming, PSYPACT offers psychologists the option to become credentialed to provide teletherapy to clients around the country, and the list of states joining PSYPACT is growing. It is a cost-effective way to reach more clients and offer online therapy to people who might not otherwise be able to access care. In order to apply to PSYPACT, you must be a licensed psychologist (Psy.D. or Ph.D.) in an already enrolled PSYPACT state.


Get the Help You Need From Wherever You Are:


You deserve high quality mental healthcare, inner peace, and happiness, no matter where you live.


Dr. Heather Violante, Psy.D., offers online therapy to adults living in Florida, New York, and PSYPACT enrolled states


Contact Dr. Violante today at 954.391.5305 for your complimentary consultation to find out how she can help you improve your overall wellbeing and achieve your goals.


For more information about her approach to counseling or services provided, click here.  

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