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Saturday Workshop Series: What EVERY Therapist Should Know About Insurance, Progress Notes and Treatment Plans, Barbara Griswold, LMFT

  • Sat, September 29, 2018
  • 9:00 AM - 1:00 PM
  • Corte Madera Town Center, Room 201, 770 Tamalpais Drive, Corte Madera, CA 94925


  • Discounted price for members of neighboring Chapters - SFCAMFT, RECAMFT and EBCAMFT. Please send an email to to request your discount code.

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Marin CAMFT Saturday Workshop

29 September 2018, 9 am - 1 pm

What EVERY Therapist Should Know About Insurance,

Progress Notes and Treatment Plans

Barbara Griswold, LMFT

This presentation is two workshops in one: 

The first two hours will be an overview of how to work with insurance, including recent changes in the insurance world that could affect your practice, even if you never join an insurance plan. We will discuss the pros and cons of joining plans, what out of network providers should know (hint: did you know if a client submits your invoice to their plan, it opens the door for review of your treatment and records?), how to keep new clients even when you aren't on their plan, a strategy for getting in the door at "full" plans, 13 essential questions to ask when checking coverage, tips for avoiding costly denials, the secret to getting more treatment approved, and surviving treatment reviews.  

The final two hours will look at what’s probably missing from your client progress notes and treatment plans While you may shiver at the idea of an insurance plan, ethics committee, or licensing board reviewing a client chart, this is happening more frequently, even if you don't work with insurance.  In these cases, well-written records can be your best defense, and can assist your clients in getting needed treatment or disability approval. You’ll get seven sample progress notes, and two sample formats.  And we’ll discuss how to write 5-minute treatment plans.

9:00 – 11:00 am:  Insurance Overview

  • Insurance terms
  • How to find diagnosis codes
  • The biggest mistake providers make when working with insurance
  • Why you shouldn’t trust the client’s insurance card—or the client
  • “Checking Coverage: 13 Essential Questions” Handout
  • The difference between EAP, HMO, EPO, PPO, and POS plans – and why you should care
  • Your choices: The pros and cons of in network vs. out of network
  • How to keep clients if you aren’t on their network
  • How to join networks – even if they say they are full – and what they are looking for
  • Coverage for couples and family therapy
  • Understanding what plans look for when reviewing your care: Medical Necessity
  • CPT codes – avoiding frequent mistakes when using them

11:00 – 11:15 Break

11:15 am – 1:00 pm:  What Should be In Your Charts – But Probably Isn’t: Writing Great Progress Notes and Treatment Plans

  • Why don’t we keep better notes?
  • Why it is essential to keep better notes (how they can protect you and help your clients)
  • What insurance plans require in your intake and progress notes
  • Key Ingredients to a Great Progress note
  • 7 Sample Progress Notes
  • Two sample styles (SOAP and DAP)
  • How to write a 5-minute Treatment Plan
  • How to choose therapy goals (including for couples therapy)
  • Sample goals and interventions

The workshop will be held at the Corte Madera Town Center, 770 Tamalpais Drive, Room 201

CLINICAL/ASSOCIATE   $59  $79                     $69 WITH CODE
PSY/RN  $79  $89


  • Marin CAMFT encourages those who attend its events to respect the fact that some individuals may have allergies to fragrances and pet dander. We ask that you refrain from introducing these elements into our meeting room. Registered service animals are welcome, of course. 
  • Information: For more information about Marin CAMFT's Workshops and about joining the Committee, please contact the Director-at-Large for CE.
  • Continuing Education Goal: Marin CAMFT is committed to offering continuing education courses to train licensees to train LMFTs, LCSWs, LPCCs and LEPs to treat any client in an ethically and clinically sound manner based upon current accepted standards of practice. Course completion certificates will be awarded at the conclusion of the training and upon participant’s submission of his or her completed evaluation. 
  • Refund Policy: Requests for refunds must be in writing and received by the Director-at-Large for CE no later than ten days before the program. There will be a $25.00 administrative fee to cancel registration for any program. The refund will be sent within ten days of the request.
  • Accommodation for Special Needs: The special needs of persons with disabilities will be accommodated. The Program Committee will endeavor to assure that continuing education program materials, content and venue selections will meet the special needs of the disabled and that reasonable accommodation will be made. A request for accommodation can be made to the Director-at-Large for CE who will work with the Committee and event venue to meet the need. All instructors will read and adhere to Marin CAMFT’s stated policies.
  • Grievance Procedure: Marin CAMFT will respond to complaints in a reasonable, ethical and timely manner, when submitted by program attendees in writing to the Director-at-Large for CE.
  • Anti-Discrimination Policy: Marin CAMFT shall not discriminate against any individual or group with respect to any service, program or activity based on gender, race, creed, national origin, sexual orientation, religion, age or other prohibited basis. Marin CAMFT does not require attendees to adhere to any particular religion or creed in order to participate in training. Marin CAMFT will not promote or advocate for a single modality of treatment that is discriminatory or likely to harm clients based on current accepted standards or practice.
  • CE Approvals: This workshop meets the qualifications for 4 CE credits for LMFTs, LCSWs, LEPs and LPCCs as required by the California Board of Behavioral Sciences for license renewal. These will be provided by Marin CAMFT (CEP # 56895), which is approved by CAMFT to sponsor CE for LMFTs, LCSWs, LPCCs and LEPs. Marin CAMFT maintains responsibility for this program and its contents  Contact Director-at-Large for CE for more information.
  • CE credits for psychologists are provided by the Spiritual Competency Resource Center (SCRC) which is co-sponsoring this program. The Spiritual Competency Resource Center is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. The Spiritual Competency Resource Center maintains responsibility for this program and its content.
  • The California Board of Behavioral Sciences accepts CE credits for LCSW, LPCC, LEP, and LMFT license renewal for programs offered by approved sponsors of CE by the American Psychological Association.
  • SCRC is approved by the California Board of Registered Nursing (BRN Provider CEP16887) for licensed nurses in California.
  • For questions about receiving your Certificate of Attendance, contact For questions about CE, visit or contact David Lukoff, PhD at

Marin County Chapter of CAMFT                  

PO Box 9065 San Rafael, CA 94912-9065     

(415) 459 3484

Marin CAMFT is approved by  the California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists (CAMFT Provider #56895) to sponsor continuing education for LMFTs, LCSWs, LPCCs, and LEPs

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