Therapy FAQ

Headway vs. Grow Therapy: What’s the Difference?

Prioritizing your wellness and deciding to start therapy isn’t always easy. Once you’ve reached that decision, you’ll likely want the process of finding the most suitable therapy provider to be as easy and stress-free as possible, which may beg the question: What’s the best choice of all the mental healthcare providers out there? Like Grow […]

Author Generic Image By Amelia Johansson

Updated on May 21, 2024

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Prioritizing your wellness and deciding to start therapy isn’t always easy. Once you’ve reached that decision, you’ll likely want the process of finding the most suitable therapy provider to be as easy and stress-free as possible, which may beg the question: What’s the best choice of all the mental healthcare providers out there?

Like Grow Therapy, many mental health care services offer online support. Headway is another option. Both Headway and Grow Therapy are service providers where clients can use various filters to find a therapist best suited to them, and both also accept insurance. But what else? And if it’s between these two providers, how will you choose?

Or maybe you’re a mental health professional looking for somewhere new to practice (we can help with that, chat with a member of our team today!)

With the prevalence of online therapy these days (partly due to the pandemic), there are many places to choose from for new therapists and seasoned providers. We’ve broken down what you — both clients and mental health professionals — can expect from Grow Therapy and Headway so that you can make the best decision. 

What Is Grow Therapy?

Founded in 2020 and headquartered in New York, Grow Therapy is a technology-enabled mental health group on a mission to bridge the gap between therapists and people seeking mental health care. 

Grow Therapy enables people to easily find a provider in their area by browsing an easy-to-navigate marketplace of qualified therapists. Grow Therapy also works with a large number of health insurance companies to help make sessions more affordable.

On the Grow Therapy website, you choose your location, insurance, needs, and whether you want virtual or in-person care and you’ll be given a list of providers available in your area. 

grow therapy provider search

To help make your selection process easier, and ensure you find the best provider match, provider profiles include their bios, years of experience, background, specialties, and appointment availability. Profiles may also include words like “solution-oriented,” “empowering,” or “authentic” to give you a better idea of the provider’s attitudes and beliefs. 

grow provider bio

You can further filter the list by:

Grow Therapy offers online and in-person therapy appointments, with communication options that include video calls, email, and messaging (on HIPAA-compliant channels) through the Grow Therapy portal. Grow Therapy handles insurance payments, claims, and billing. For clients, that means dealing with one dashboard for your appointments, payments, and general communication. 

On average, Grow Therapy users pay between $0 to $125 per session, depending on health plans and deductibles. The average copay falls around $30 or less. Grow Therapy has over 6,000+ providers, ranging in specialty from psychiatrists for medication management to those who focus on areas like couples therapy or teen counseling. 

Grow Therapy has providers in 46 states plus the District of Columbia, though some areas may have limited availability depending on the insurance provider. If you’re unhappy with your chosen therapist, you can change to someone else on the Grow Therapy platform at no additional charge. 

What Is Headway?

Headway is a mental health startup that also focuses on access, affordability, and quality. Founded in 2019, Headway houses a directory that connects those seeking therapy with in-network therapists. 

Not only is Headway trying to eliminate the high-cost barrier that stops many people from seeking therapy, but it also makes it easier for therapists to accept insurance flexibility in their private practice. 

Similar to Grow Therapy, you start by choosing your location, insurance, and any concerns you’d like to focus on (with the option to leave it blank).

headway search page

You’re then given a results page that shows on a map all the providers for those parameters. You can then narrow your results down further based on additional filters, including the provider’s gender, ethnicity, availability, modalities, and more.

You’ll be able to browse provider profiles, getting a short glimpse at their credentials, specialties, and next appointment time. You can read more about each provider by viewing their entire bio.

Whether you’re seeking therapy as a client or a therapy provider, the tables below will give you a quick breakdown of how the two companies compare:

For Clients

Grow Therapy Headway
Average Cost The average cost is under $30 with insurance $20-$50 per session, depending on insurance plan coverage
Practicing Therapists 6,000 17,500+
Modes of Communication Video, email, messaging, in-person Phone, video, in-person
Services Various methods of talk therapy, psychiatry, and med management Various methods of talk therapy, psychiatry, and med management
Accepts/Bills Insurance Yes Yes, but not Medicaid or Medicare
In-Person or Telehealth In-person and online In-person and online
States Covered  46 plus Washington, D.C. 14 plus Washington, D.C.
Specialties Offered 30  20

For Providers

Grow Therapy Headway
Community Portal Offered? Yes No
Help With Billing, Client, and Insurance Admin? Yes Yes
Free To Join? Yes Yes
Easy Scheduling System? Yes Yes
Built-In Telehealth Video Platform? Yes No

Headway vs. Grow Therapy

There are several things you need to consider when comparing these two mental health services. To help you decide which is best for you, we’ve broken down the key factors, whether you’re a client seeking therapy or a provider looking to start your own private practice. 

Specialties

Both Grow Therapy and Headway have thousands of therapy providers, from LCSWs and LCPs to LCPCs, LMHCs, and more. 

To ensure that clients receive top-quality care, Grow Therapy conducts a multi-step interview process with licensed therapists to ensure their qualifications meet the company’s standards. 

Grow Therapy’s 6,000 providers boast an average of 12 years of experience and cover 30 specialties, including, but not limited to, the following:

Headway, while home to 17,500 therapists, only covers 14 states and offers treatment and guidance for just 20 specialties compared to Grow Therapy’s 30. 

Provider Benefits

Providers looking to start their own private practice can join Grow Therapy for free and receive help with credentialing, billing, and support. As a provider at Grow Therapy, whether full-time or part-time, you can gain access to a private community of Grow providers to share support, advice, and camaraderie. 

JohnNeiska Williams, a Grow Therapy Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC), has experienced several benefits while working here. “The resources, including the community, both personally and professionally, allow me to be a clinician and a person. Also, the consistency of referrals. Because of Grow’s attention to its clinicians, so many updates and advancements are steadily growing and have grown since my onboarding. This increases my number of referrals and client accessibility to therapists such as myself.”

Headway is also free for providers to join. Like Grow Therapy, the platform helps providers with administrative tasks such as credentialing, claim submission, and payment, but no peer community or peer consultation is available. 

Insurance and Billing

In 2020, 20.78% of American adults experienced mental illness, but 42% reported that they couldn’t access treatment due to the costs. The costs of mental health care can be a high barrier to treatment in America, which is why it’s so important that platforms like Grow Therapy and Headway accept health insurance to make sessions more affordable for clients.

Here, we explain the client and provider benefits of insurance and billing that come with both therapy services. 

Clients

To pay for Grow Therapy sessions, clients can pay in cash or through their health insurance. While the health insurance companies that are accepted at Grow Therapy vary by state, they include, but aren’t limited to:

Depending on a person’s insurance coverage and deductible, the average cost of a session with a Grow Therapy provider is $30. If you have any remaining fees not covered by insurance, you can use credit, debit, or HSA to pay — Grow Therapy takes care of all insurance claims and payments for you. If you don’t have insurance, you can still access services with cash payment. 

Headway is also partnered with many health insurance companies, but Medicaid and Medicare aren’t included in that list. Also, clients can only book a therapy session if they have health insurance — cash payments aren’t an option. 

Headway’s website states that clients shouldn’t expect any surprise bills or rejected claims. Clients only pay what they owe after the session, while Headway takes care of the rest. To get the exact price for a Headway session, clients need to fill in their insurance details, but it’s expected to be between $20-$50. 

Providers

For providers, Grow Therapy offers guaranteed billing and insurance claims. And if providers have questions or queries about billing, there’s always dedicated live support to follow up with. 

Not only can Grow Therapy providers get paneled for free with the major payers in their state so that they can start seeing insurance clients, but they can also benefit from custom-built, centralized invoice submissions.

Headway providers can get credentialed with the top plans in their state in as little as 30 days by filling out a simple, hassle-free application while Headway handles the rest. 

Headway also looks after admin so providers don’t have to, such as benefits verification, claim submission, and payment collection.

Therapy Sessions and Scheduling

It’s important that scheduling and managing therapy sessions are easy for both the client and the provider. Here’s how Grow Therapy and Headway compare: 

Clients

Thanks to the beauty of online therapy — also sometimes called teletherapy — clients can “access their therapist from anywhere, at any time,” says Melissa Galica, a Grow Therapy Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC). “This can be especially helpful for people with busy schedules or who live in rural areas.

Once someone has decided on Grow Therapy and is ready to choose the right therapist for them, the filtered search caters to many requirements that a client may have once a state, insurance type, and specialty has been selected, such as virtual/in-person, gender, identity (including religion and ethnicity), and availability. Or maybe someone needs medication management — Grow Therapy offers this too.

After a therapist has been chosen, clients can opt for a time directly from their preferred therapist’s calendar. Most therapists are available for appointments within two days. Choosing a therapist can be a big decision, so if clients are unsure, Grow Therapy has an expert matching team to help them with their search. 

Headway offers a very similar search function; however, there are a few different search filters to choose from, such as language and therapy modality (the method of psychotherapy used to meet a client’s goals). 

Headway clients can request an initial phone consultation to speak with a provider and decide if they want to continue booking a session.

Providers

Because Grow Therapy’s platform allows clients to choose between in-person or virtual appointments, this offers flexibility to providers. Client management and scheduling are all managed in one place, making life simple for Grow Therapy providers — and should there be any issues, there’s a provider support team on-hand to help.

Plus, if providers have existing clients they wish to bring to Grow Therapy, they can do so.

Galica adds, “Convenience and flexibility are two of the most important benefits of Grow Therapy for both clients and providers. As a provider, you can set your caseload and how you want to schedule sessions. You can choose to let your clients schedule themselves, or you can have total control over scheduling. Also, Grow Therapy recently added a new feature that allows me to send secure messages to my clients. This has been a huge timesaver and has made it easier for me to stay in touch with my clients.”

The provider portal at Headway is, quite cleverly, called Sigmund. This is where Headway providers can set their weekly working hours. They can also link up external calendars with their Headway calendar so that any unavailable hours can be blocked out. Within Sigmund, there’s also a simple-to-use messenger function that providers can use to contact their clients. 

However, Headway providers are asked to maintain at least four open slots for clients to book at all times, which can be difficult if their schedule is full or close to being full.

Key Takeaways 

Both Grow Therapy and Headway are working to make access to mental health care more affordable and convenient. But while the mission of both companies is similar, the accessibility varies between the two.  

Grow Therapy has providers in far more states than Headway and works with a wider range of insurance providers, including Medicare and Medicaid, as well as a cash-pay option for those without.

If you’re a mental health provider looking for somewhere to practice, Grow Therapy might be just the place for you — find out more on our Provider page

We’ll leave you with a final note from Galica on why Grow Therapy makes sense for people seeking mental health support: 

“The number one reason to consider Grow Therapy is privacy. Grow Therapy is fully committed to protecting client privacy from beginning to end. As a provider, I have seen other platforms that don’t take privacy as seriously. In addition, Grow has compiled an astounding range of expertise in the field of counseling. Finally, Grow also offers a library of resources, a blog, and a community forum to make the experience that much better.”

If you’re looking to start your mental health journey, Grow Therapy is home to many excellent, licensed therapists specializing in various mental health concerns. Simply filter by the specialty and insurance type you’re looking for, and find the right therapist for you or your loved ones. 

Frequently Asked Questions

About the author
Author Generic Image Amelia Johansson

Amelia is a content editor, writer, and copywriter currently based in Morocco.

This article is not meant to be a replacement for medical advice. We recommend speaking with a therapist for personalized information about your mental health. If you don’t currently have a therapist, we can connect you with one who can offer support and address any questions or concerns. If you or your child is experiencing a medical emergency, is considering harming themselves or others, or is otherwise in imminent danger, you should dial 9-1-1 and/or go to the nearest emergency room.

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