Advocacy Update: Investing Funds to Protect our Profession
In 2021, the MAMFT board reviewed ways to invest in the future of our organization. At the time, it was decided to utilize MAMFT reserve funds in an investment portfolio. Before going forward with investing, we looked at current financial markets, and considered the priorities set forth by our members. Given these variables, the board reconsidered the best way to invest. It was decided that funds would be better spent working to address issues facing MFTs in their practice.
Many of you have experienced how the decisions of an insurance panel can impact our work, and our profession. Currently, insurance panels often pay LESS for a family/relational therapy session, than they do for an individual therapy session. We believe in the specialized training, skills, and effort it takes to do relational therapy. And thus we believe our work as MFTs should be paid, at minimum, at the same rate as individual therapy.
In addition, we learned that some insurance panels have started to require, for a session to be considered family therapy, that the designated client be a minor attending therapy with their caregiver(s). There are instances of insurance panels denying claims for family/relational therapy, if there isn’t a minor at the center of the therapy. MFTs know that families come in many forms, and the need for family/relational therapy is vital to clients of every age. We don’t believe insurance panels should be defining what a family is or isn’t, or who is entitled to family therapy.
To address these issues, we need support. After months of vetting options, the MAMFT board has decided to contract with a legal advocacy firm, Hylden Advocacy & Law, to help address these important issues of reimbursement equity, and protect our scope of practice from being defined by insurance companies. We believe these efforts will benefit both our MFT community and the communities we serve.
This is likely going to be a multi-year effort, which will take the support of our members, in addition to our new legal partners, and likely our elected officials. We hope that our members will choose to actively participate in this process, and help us in continuing to fund the work it will take to be successful. If you are interested in supporting our efforts, please fill out this FORM, so we can connect you with other volunteers accordingly.
If you have any other questions about these advocacy efforts, please contact Alex Iantaffi at firstname.lastname@example.org
We look forward to advocating on behalf of MFTs across Minnesota!