Talkiatry Review

Access quality online psychiatry services from the comfort of home

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Talkiatry

Talkiatry

Talkiatry

Pros
  • Psychiatry and medication management

  • In-network with most insurance companies

  • Free assessment and preliminary diagnosis

  • Expert psychiatric providers offer services to children, teens, and adults

  • Flexible scheduling with online and in-office sessions

  • Easy-to-use online platform

Cons
  • No fee information provided—individual copays and fees vary

  • No free consultations with a psychiatrist

  • Currently only serves clients in New York state

If you’re a resident of New York state and you’re looking for an online psychiatrist, Talkiatry is a good option, as long as your health insurance is in-network.

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Talkiatry

Talkiatry

Talkiatry

Founded by Robert Krayn and Dr. Georgia Gaveras in April 2020, New York City-based Talkiatry is a relative newcomer to the world of online therapy. The company’s goal from its inception has been to connect people with quality psychiatrists who can prescribe medication via telemedicine.

As psychiatry is the most expensive type of mental health treatment, this goal sets Talkiatry apart from much of the competition—in fact, it’s the only company we reviewed that focuses mainly on psychiatric care. This is likely because its mission is personal to its two founders.

After spending 18 years working in New York hospitals, Dr. Gaveras, a triple board-certified psychiatrist in general psychiatry, child and adolescent psychiatry, and addiction medicine, felt strongly that the advances in technology presented an opportunity to make psychiatry more flexible and accessible. Her co-founder Robert Krayn shared her vision: After experiencing a personal traumatic experience in 2016 and struggling to find an in-network psychiatrist for himself, he was determined to make it easier for others.

To fairly and thoroughly review Talkiatry against its competitors, we surveyed 100 current users from 33 different online therapy platforms in order to gain insight into their experiences. We also sent a questionnaire directly to each company to get more detailed information about their offerings. 

These surveys and questionnaires allowed us to directly compare offerings, quality of service, and client satisfaction across companies. Here’s how Talkiatry stacks up against its online therapy competition. 

First Impressions and Sign-up Process 

The first thing you’ll see when you visit Talkiatry’s homepage is the prominent text, “Psychiatry, with you in mind.” Below this, there is a button prompting you to take Talkiatry’s six-part assessment. As you scroll down, you’ll find links to information about treatment options, bios of all its staff, insurance plans that are in-network, and an infographic outlining the sign-up process.

Talkiatry homepage
Talkiatry Homepage.

The homepage features cheery colors and clear navigation: Drop-down links at the top of the page lead to information about the company and its services, and also link to the patient portal login page.

Clicking on “Insurance” in the top navigation bar takes you to a tool that lets you instantly find out if Talkiatry accepts your insurance plan. However, while most online therapy services provide a range of typical out-of-pocket fees, Talkiatry does not—your final cost is determined by your insurance plan. This makes it difficult to compare the company’s prices against the other companies we reviewed. 

The site also features an informative blog with four sections: education, news, support, and insights. You can search the blog for specific mental health topics, filter blog entries and articles by section, or scroll down to browse all recent posts.

Only 60% of the users surveyed reported that they either had a very good or excellent experience signing up for Talkiatry.

First up is an assessment that helps Talkiatry’s algorithm give you a preliminary diagnosis and match you with doctors who best fit your needs. The assessment’s six sections should take about 10 minutes to complete in full, but if you need to take a break, you can use a return code to pick up where you left off at any time. 

Once your assessment has been submitted, you’re prompted to submit your insurance information and choose the psychiatrist you would like to work with based on algorithm-selected recommendations. 

It is worth noting that during the intake process, you are not asked any questions about whether you have any particular preferences in terms of your doctor. If you do, you might have to wade through a lot of recommendations before you find someone you might feel comfortable with.

Once you choose a psychiatrist, you’ll be invited to create an account and gain access to your personal patient portal, where you’ll be able to book your first session. Your doctor, who will have access to the results of your assessment, will then confirm the scheduled appointment through your portal.

According to the company, you will be able to see a psychiatrist in two to four days. Based on user survey responses, this seems accurate, with a few reporting a slightly longer waiting time:

  • Twenty-six percent said they heard from their doctor within the same day.
  • Thirty-nine percent said they heard from them in a couple of days.
  • Twenty-six percent said they heard from them within one week.
  • Nine percent said it took two weeks or more to hear from their doctor.

Cost 

In response to our questionnaire, Talkiatry confirmed that it is in-network with all major health plans, including Medicare (but not Medicaid). No fees or prices are given on the company’s website, as coverage and copays are negotiated with each insurance company individually. This means that your final cost will vary by the types of providers and treatments your policy covers. Perhaps this is why only 65% of Talkiatry users said the prices were very good or excellent.

What Subscription Plans Does Talkiatry Offer?

Subscriptions are not available. Talkiatry is a pay-as-you-go service. 

Is There a Free Trial?

No.

Does Talkiatry Accept Insurance?

One of the biggest perks of choosing this service is its cooperation with most insurance companies. Private practice psychiatrists are significantly less likely than other physicians to accept insurance. Many require payment in full at each appointment, though some do provide superbills, or an itemized list of all services provided to clients so they can submit a claim to their insurance company. 

Talkiatry accepts over 60 major insurance plans.

If your insurance isn’t currently in-network, you may still have out-of-network benefits that will cover some of your costs if you provide a receipt from Talkiatry. The receipts can be accessed online in the patient portal. You’ll have to check with your insurance company and new provider, though, so that you know exactly what portion of session costs you will be responsible for before committing to treatment.

Can You Change or Cancel Your Subscription?

Since Talkiatry does not offer subscriptions, you are free to book as many individual sessions as you want, depending on your schedule and budget. You have control over how frequently you see your provider.

Clients may cancel their sessions for free with at least 48 hours’ notice. However, no-shows and cancellations with less notice will incur a $100 fee.

Are There Discounts Available?

Talkiatry does not offer any special discounts or promotions. 

Ease of Use

Eighty-three percent of those surveyed thought the platform was either very good or excellent in terms of user-friendliness and ease of navigation. 

Talkiatry offers sessions via live video chat as well as in-office visits.

You can easily schedule your online sessions through your patient portal at any time; or, if you prefer to meet in person at Talkiatry’s flagship New York office, you can schedule an in-person follow-up directly with your psychiatrist at the end of the session.

If you opt for virtual sessions, they’re held through live video via the patient portal or Healow app (more on that below). Eighty-one percent of respondents rated the video and platform quality as either very good or excellent.

There are no e-chat communication options like those offered by other talk therapy services—you can only talk to your psychiatrist in live sessions. However, Talkiatry confirmed that its clients can message their psychiatrist directly if there are any medication concerns. 

Eighty-one percent of surveyed users reported that the speed at which they heard a response from the therapist was either very good or excellent. 

If you need to switch psychiatrists, you can request this through your Talkiatry portal and the algorithm will find new matches for you to choose from. You can also call Talkiatry’s office and speak directly with a customer service team member or send an email. It’s worth noting, however, that the switching process is slightly slower and less convenient than at some of the larger companies, many of which let you change providers with a single tap. 

Still, 74% of users we surveyed described the process as easy or very easy—which is on par with Talkiatry’s competition.

Therapists' Qualifications and Quality of Care

Eighty-six percent of the people we surveyed said that provider qualifications and expertise played a significant role in their decision to sign up.

Eighty-three percent of surveyed users said they found the medical professionals’ qualifications to be either very good or excellent. 

Talkiatry employs board-certified or board-eligible psychiatrists, doctors, and psychiatric nurse practitioners. With Talkiatry, you’re guaranteed to find a provider who can make diagnoses and prescribe medications. No life-coaches or other non-medical practitioners are used.

While most of the staff associated with Talkiatry are medical doctors who specialize in psychiatric medications and mental health diagnoses, there are some psychiatrists on staff who also offer talk therapy to established clients (subject to availability) as part of their treatment plans. However, only 63% of respondents said they were satisfied or very satisfied with the number of providers who are able to do so, a lower-than-average rating.

An impressive 99% of the users we talked to said they were either satisfied or very satisfied with the therapist options at Talkiatry.

Every Talkiatry provider has a lengthy biography on the Our Psychiatrists page that details their certifications, training, previous work experience; from the photos, it appears that its staff is diverse. You can filter providers by ages served, specialty (including medication management, LGBTQ+, and EMDR), language, and telemedicine availability. This is very helpful information to have when selecting a doctor in general, as many don’t have the adequate specialization to treat mental health issues such as psychosis or ADHD. 

It is worth noting, however, that you cannot filter providers based on cultural competencies besides LGBTQ+. However, other languages besides English are offered.


Provider options are important, as some clients have to switch clinicians a few times before finding the right match. Only 6% of the users we surveyed said they met with only one Talkiatry doctor. Thirty percent reported that they met with two, 42% met with three, and 22% with four or more different psychiatrists. 

It can be all but impossible to establish a solid therapeutic relationship when provider turnover forces you to change doctors once or even multiple times. However, Talkiatry seems to minimize turnover and allow you to have continuity with your provider.

Types of Therapy Offered

Eighty-seven percent of the Talkiatry users we spoke to said the types of services they received were good, very good, or excellent. 

Talkiatry focuses on psychiatric evaluation, diagnosis, psychiatric treatment, and medication management services for a range of mental health conditions, including:

While the focus at Talkiatry is on psychiatric treatment, your psychiatrist may decide that talk therapy should be a part of your treatment plan and might utilize a variety of techniques, including:

Privacy Policies

Talkiatry verifies new clients’ identities during sign-up, so its services are not anonymous. But your private data is kept secure with industry-standard SSL encryption and isn’t shared with third parties—with some exceptions, as outlined on the HIPAA Information page. For instance, insurance companies require Talkiatry to provide information about treatments, diagnoses, evaluation results, and clinical notes in order to provide coverage.

Medical professionals are required by law to contact authorities and share your information if you are suicidal or a threat to someone else.

Talkiatry offers both virtual sessions and in-person appointments to their New York-based clients using Healow, a secure, HIPAA-compliant telehealth platform. Healow stores your records electronically, making it easy to share with other members of your care team or view them yourself.

Its Privacy Policy discloses that Talkiatry’s website and app collect information via cookies and other tracking methods for internal use, but also explains how to disable them if desired. 

The website states that they treat children and adults. However, the privacy statement says that those under 13 require parental consent.

Overall Client Satisfaction

Seventy percent of current users we surveyed rated the services they received through Talkiatry as either very good or excellent, and 77% said its value was very good or excellent for the money spent.

Ninety-one percent of surveyed users who had used other online therapy services said that Talkiatry was better or much better than their previous online service.

Our data suggests that, despite Talkiatry being a relatively new company, users seem intent on sticking with it for their psychiatric care. Of the users we polled:

  • Twelve percent had been Talkiatry clients for three to six months.
  • Forty-three percent had six to 12 months under their belt.
  • Twenty-three percent had been clients for over one year.

In fact, 93% of users told us they were likely or very likely to be working with a Talkiatry psychiatrist a year from now, suggesting that the company has fostered a good amount of trust with the majority of its clients.

Ninety-eight percent of users reported that they were either likely or very likely to recommend someone like them to Talkiatry—a higher than average rating.

Is Talkiatry Right For You? 

Based on its services and staff, Talkiatry seems best suited for clients who need medication management or psychiatric evaluations more than talk therapy alone. As a result, it might be a good choice if you live with a personality disorder, a panic disorder, or more severe depression. 

Talkiatry is a service that’s best suited for people with good health insurance. If you don’t have health insurance or if your health insurance has a high deductible, however, you might want to look elsewhere. 

It’s important to note that, as a new company, Talkiatry only serves New York state so it is not the right choice for you if you live elsewhere. It’s also not a service solely for talk therapy or couples therapy. 

The company does not offer same-day appointments and while the staff is diverse, you aren’t asked any questions during intake to help you find a therapist of a particular identity or background. 

Talkiatry is also not a good fit for people who are experiencing an acute mental crisis, struggling with psychosis or suicidal/homicidal thoughts, or in need of urgent care or hospitalization.

Talkiatry vs. PlushCare

Both companies offer some talk therapy, but neither as its primary service: Talkiatry focuses on psychiatric care and medication management, while PlushCare provides general medical services including regular checkups, urgent care, and lab work, as well as mental health services.

Both Talkiatry and PlushCare offer medication management for mental health conditions, but Talkiatry does so via psychiatrists, and PlushCare via primary care physicians.

As of October 2021, Talkiatry only offers psychiatric treatment and medication management within the state of New York, but they plan to be able to offer services to residents of Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Connecticut and possibly other states in the future. PlushCare can provide medical care (though not necessarily mental health services) to clients in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. The number of available mental health professionals varies by state. 

Both companies offer live virtual sessions that fit your needs and schedule. Talkiatry will have select a provider from a list generated by a matching algorithm and PlushCare lets you choose your doctor from a list using filters. You can also switch providers at any time. 


Both companies focus on live video-based visits. They don't offer the continuous therapy chats that many other companies emphasize. Talkiatry clients have the advantage of potentially seeing their new doctor face to face; there are no physical PlushCare locations yet in any state, but its doctors coordinate treatment and lab tests with facilities in your area. 

Both company websites are informative and easy to navigate. Clients might find it helpful that Talkiatry’s provider biographies are generally more detailed than PlushCare’s. Both companies employ only board-certified or board-eligible doctors, nurses, and therapists, but neither Talkiatry nor PlushCare is a good option for specialized therapies such as premarital counseling, couples counseling, or sex therapy. It would be best to see counselors and therapists who are trained and licensed to address these specific needs. 

Both companies work with many major insurance companies and can process billing for you, decreasing your out-of-pocket costs. 

As noted, Talkiatry’s site doesn’t indicate what the final treatment costs will be to you. It bills you per session. 


PlushCare, on the other hand, is more transparent about fees: 

  • A PlushCare membership costs $14 per month or $99 per year and gives you access to same day booking, a care team, and messaging.
  • Each medical appointment costs $119 without insurance.
  • There is a mental health therapy subscription that will lower your cost to $99 from $119 if you commit to weekly sessions.
  • If you commit to once a month medication sessions with a doctor, those will also be $99 a visit with the first month being offered for just $49.

If you’re insured and interested in receiving care from either company, call the number on your insurance card to confirm your coverage and copay.

Talkiatry’s psychiatrists can assist with a wider and more severe range of psychiatric concerns than PlushCare’s primary care physicians, and therefore, can complete more detailed mental health evaluations and offer more specific diagnoses than its competitor.

Of the users we surveyed:

  • Seventy percent of Talkiatry users and 65% of PlushCare users said the services were either very good or excellent. 
  • Ninety-eight percent of Talkiatry clients said they were either likely or very likely to refer someone to the company; 96% of PlushCare clients said the same. 

Of respondents who had tried other therapy services in the past, 89% of Talkiatry users and 82% of PlushCare users reported that the quality of their current service has been either better or much better. 

In addition, 90% of Talkiatry users reported they were either likely or very likely to still be seeing a therapist within the company a year from now, comparable with the 89% of PlushCare clients who said the same.

Final Verdict

Talkiatry’s goal has always been to connect clients with quality, in-network psychiatrists, and psychiatric care is an essential part of treatment for mental health symptoms like bipolar disorder, severe depression, or panic disorders. 

Talkiatry is a good option if you live in New York, need medication management, and prefer the convenience of online sessions—especially if you have in-network coverage or out-of-network benefits. 

Unfortunately, it’s not a good fit for people who primarily need individual talk therapy or urgent crisis care.

Methodology

Our methodology for evaluating online therapy companies is comprehensive and data-driven. To review the best online therapy programs, we sent questionnaires to 33 companies and surveyed 100 current users of each. This allowed us to directly and fairly compare services offered by gathering qualitative and quantitative data about each company and users’ experiences.

Specifically, we evaluated each company on:

  • Website usability
  • Sign-up process 
  • Therapist qualifications 
  • Types of therapy offered
  • Quality of care
  • Client-therapist communication options
  • Session length
  • Subscription offerings 
  • Client privacy protections 
  • Cost and value for money
  • Whether they take insurance
  • Average out-of-pocket costs
  • Therapist assignment process
  • Ease of changing therapists
  • Overall user satisfaction
  • Likelihood clients would recommend them


Learn more: Read our full online therapy methodology to see how we evaluated each service.

Specs

  • Product Name Talkiatry
  • Year Founded 2020
  • Insurance Accepted BCBS, Cigna, United Health, Aetna, Tricare, Medicare, and others
  • Price Copays and out-of-pocket fees vary
  • HIPAA Compliant Yes
  • Platforms Live video chat, in-person sessions
  • Payment Options Credit cards, major insurance
  • App Available? Yes
Edited by
Simone Scully
simone-scully-verywell

Simone is the health associate editorial director for performance marketing at Verywell. She has over a decade of experience as a professional journalist covering mental health, chronic conditions, medicine, and science.

Learn about our editorial process
and
Ray Finch
Ray Finch

Ray is a copy editor, fact-checker, mental health writer, and editorial producer with over five years of experience.

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Verywell Mind uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
  1. Bishop, T. F., Press, M. J., Keyhani, S., & Pincus, H. A. (2014). Acceptance of insurance by psychiatrists and the implications for access to Mental Health Care. JAMA Psychiatry, 71(2). https://doi.org/10.1001/jamapsychiatry.2013.2862