(Photo via facebook.com/MissAmberellaxo)
With the recent suicides of fashion designer Kate Spade and chef and travel documentarian Anthony Bourdain, social media feeds have been flooded with messages urging people who are struggling with mental health issues to seek professional help.
Not being insured and not knowing if you’re able to afford professional help shouldn’t be factors that make the decision to seek that help any harder. But for many people, they are: Low-cost counseling can be as difficult to find as low-cost health insurance, especially for prospective clients of color.
Here are a few places in Philadelphia offering therapy on a sliding scale based on yearly income, number of dependents and other factors.
(P.S. If you do have insurance or are looking for options besides the ones listed below, check out Philly technologist Lauren Hallden’s therapy cost calculator.)
The nonprofit offers short-term, anonymous peer counseling for LGBTQ-related issues. Clients get eight free sessions with a peer counselor. The peer counselors aren’t certified, but the group of college students, transgender people and senior citizens are trained and supervised by psychiatrists.
- 1315 Spruce St.;215-732-8255
This clinic is run by the Department of Psychology at Drexel University and staffed by clinical psychology doctoral students who are supervised by licensed professionals. The training facility aims to provide “high quality, accessible and affordable” services to the surrounding area. The fees for therapy are determined on a sliding scale based on income and number of people supported by that income. Fees vary for other services.
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- Intake session is free
- $15/hr for yearly income lower than $30,000
- $25/hr for $30,000 to $60,000
- $30/hr for $60,000 to $75,000
- $35/hr for $75,000 to $90,000
- $40/hr for $90,000 to $105,000
- $45/hr for $105,000 to $120,000
- $50/hr for $120,000 and up
Fees can be reduced if an individual has dependents.
- 3201 Chestnut St., Stratton Hall, 2nd floor (instructions to locate the office on campus); 215-553-7128
This nonprofit aims to provide “quality counseling services to all in need.” There are locations in Center City and University City. Fees are determined on a sliding scale based on income and varies depending on clinician or graduate intern.
Sliding scale (with supervised interns):
- $15 to $45 according to income
Staff clinician fees increase from here and vary based on the experience level of the clinician. Council for Relationships doesn’t turn people away due to lack of funds and clients can pay as little as $1 a session if they can’t afford $15.
- Center City — 1800 JFK Blvd, Suite 888; 215-382-6680 Ext. 1 or fill out a form
- University City — 4025 Chestnut St.; 215-382-6680 Ext. 1 or fill out a form
The practice offers short term individual therapy and group therapy. Jennifer Bullock, who runs the group, lets new clients decide the fee they’re able to pay within the sliding scale.
- $20 to $50 for students and people who are underemployed
- 245 S. 16th St.; 215-957-5073
This outpatient counseling center has locations in Fairmount and Society Hill. The center offers individual therapy on a sliding scale and shares self-help tips on its website.
- $35 to $200 for individual counseling
- $10 a session for support groups
Call for more information on specifics of sliding scale and choosing a therapist
- Art Museum/Fairmount — 2401 Pennsylvania Ave., Suite 1A2; 215-922-5683
- Society Hill — 233 S. Sixth St., Suite C-33; 215-922-5683
This is the therapy branch of Emerge Wellness, a Center City practice committed to holistic health and wellness. The practice offers therapy services to LGBT individuals in a “comfortable environment.”
- $50 to $125 based on income
- 1518 Walnut St., Suite 303; 215-603-7336
Professional Psychological Services has a team of licensed counselors, psychologists and social workers. The practice offers a variety of services. Some practitioners offer free services available for people who are connected to the military, including veterans, active service members and widows. Call the main office for more information.
- $70 per session
- Rittenhouse (main office) — 250 S. 17th St., Suite 101; 215-545-7895 ext. 2
- Fern Rock — 1600 Stenton Ave.
This healthcare provider for the LGBT community in Philadelphia offers health and wellness support including outpatient mental and behavioral health services.
Fees for individual therapy are personalized to income. Call for more information on specifics of sliding scale.
- 1348 Bainbridge St.; 215-563-0652 ext. 248
This Latino-operated outpatient agency has a pro bono program for people who are unemployed. New patients who meet the criteria for the pro bono program can receive individual counseling for free. The agency doesn’t turn away interested patients who are undocumented.
Call for more information about pro bono program or specific fees.
- 3156 Kensington Ave.; 215-291-8151
- 3221 Kensington Ave.; 215-425-6900
The network provides primary care, behavioral health, dental and other additional services. Outpatient behavioral health services are offered at Abbottsford-Falls, Health Annex and 11th Street Family Health Services. Interested patients should call to make a referral to schedule an intake appointment.
- $5 to $20 per session based on income
- Abbottsford-Falls — 4700 Wissahickon Ave.; 215-843-9720
- Health Annex — 6120-B Woodland Ave., 2nd floor; 215-727-4721
- 11th Street Family Health Services — 850 N. 11th St.; 215-769-1100
New primary care patients are being accepted at each location and can be referred to integrated behavior health services onsite.
A nonprofit serving women, transgender and gender non-conforming adult communities, TCP’s main office is in Center City and a satellite office at Inner Rhythms Music and Therapy Center in West Philadelphia. Fee is determined on a sliding scale based on income and number of dependents. The fee is determined at intake and then reassessed every year.
- $35 to $120 individual and couples
- $20 to $70 group therapy
- Established rate plus $25 for intake
- Center City — 1315 Walnut St., Suite 1004; 215-567-1111
- West Philadelphia — 4145 Chestnut St.; 215-567-1111 Ext. 812
Not accepting new patients at the moment. No wait list.
This nationwide network of mental health professionals provides in-office mental health care “at a steeply reduced rate,” wrote Program Director Lisa Isenhart in an email. The nonprofit currently has around 80 therapists in the Philly area accepting new clients for reduced-fee psychotherapy sessions.
- One-time lifetime membership fee of $49
- $30 to $50 per session for individual counseling
- $30 to $80 per session for couples or family counseling
Check out Open Path’s website for a list of local therapists.
Petit is a family therapy who speaks both Spanish and English and specializes in grief and loss, including “emotional losses, which is particularly relevant for marginalized communities who face discrimination and ‘othering,'” including those in the LGBTQ community, he wrote in an email. He works on a “good faith sliding scale” — meaning, no proof of income required.
- $60/session for yearly income up to $30,000
- $70/session for $30,000 t0 $40,000
- $80/session for $40,000 to $50,000
- $90/session for $50,000 to $60,000
- $100/session for $60,000 to $70,000
- $110/session for $70,000 to $80,000
- $120/session for $80,000 to $90,000
- $130/session for $90,000+
For families with two or more children:
- $50/session for up to $30,000
- $60/session for $30,000 t0 $40,000
- $70/session for $40,000 to $50,000
- $80/session for $50,000 to $60,000
- $90/session for $60,000 to $70,000
- $100/session for $70,000 to $80,000
- $110/session for $80,000 to $90,000
- $120/session for $90,000+
- 255 S 17th St.; 484-800-1468
Phone consultations are free. Petit said he currently has one reduced fee spot available at a flat fee of $40.
This clinic is distinct from the Drexel Psychological Services Center and is run by second-year couple and family therapy students at Drexel. It also offers services on a sliding fee scale based on income.
- $10 to $20 per session, but no one is turned away due to inability to pay
- Center City — 1601 Cherry Street, Second Floor
- West Philadelphia — 3020 Market Street, Suite 510
PhIIRST has a group a therapists who are sex-positive, gender-affirming and poly- and kink-friendly, according to therapist Colby Agostinelli.
- $70 to $120 per session, plus an intern who sees clients for $35
- 255 S. 17th Street, Suite 2200; 267-519-0241
Editor’s note: This guide may be updated. If you’d like your organization to be added to the guide, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.-30-
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