Why is Ketamine Assisted Psychotherapy so expensive when ketamine is an inexpensive and increasingly available medication?

Ketamine may be a useful medication in and of itself and it is certainly possible to acquire ketamine online or at infusion centers as a solely medication-based intervention.  And, while ketamine can be effective for short term improvements in the treatment of depression and other mental health conditions, it requires repeated dosing and may be less effective over time.  

 

However, when ketamine is correctly recognized and used as a psychedelic therapy, its benefits can be sustained and even curative.  This requires attention to the mindset of the user and the setting in which the medicine is used. Our ketamine assisted psychotherapy protocol includes a comprehensive therapeutic and medical assessment and follow up and hours of weekly experiential therapy focused on nature connection at our mountain retreat center.  Our ketamine assisted psychotherapy sessions are conducted outdoors or in rustic structures when possible and attended by a therapist specifically trained and experienced in psychedelic therapy and all sessions are monitored by a physician or nurse practitioner.  The primary expense of our approach is the hours spent with trained and experienced providers.  Within this framework, the unique and valuable perceptual shift that ketamine can offer can be anchored with a durable connection to the natural world.  

Clients also have access to classes and events at Asheville Integrative Psychiatry for no additional charge while enrolled in KAP services. 

While most insurers do not currently pay for the ketamine assisted psychotherapy sessions themselves, they do usually cover the many hours of physician and therapist visits included in our protocol and our medical record keeping software is designed to provide "super-bills" that can be given to insurers for reimbursement. We do all that we can to ensure that our clients out-of-pocket expenses are as small as possible.

The therapeutic and medical assessment provided in our protocol ensures that all avenues of healing are being explored and attended to so that the use of KAP is safe and appropriate.  All sessions are conducted by therapists who have met our extensive requirements for psychedelic therapy, have experience with ketamine assisted psychotherapy specifically, and have been trained in our approach to nature connection therapy.  Additionally, all sessions are medically monitored by our Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner and physicians.  

While the unique perspective that psychedelics can offer is extraordinarily valuable, it is also temporary.  With the guiding hand of a well trained and experienced therapist and the amount of therapy offered throughout the protocol, the insights gained from psychedelic medicines can be incorporated into daily life and can remain accessible.   

 

Considering the cost and duration of typical medical therapy, our protocol may be less expensive than other alternatives. Our protocol represents what we believe to be the best available method of using ketamine assisted psychotherapy as a component of a holistic treatment plan for mental health based on our training and experience in the fields of integrative psychiatry and psychedelic medicine.