Misuse of APA Clinical Practice Guidelines by Insurance Companies


 Vinodha Joly, LMFT

Psychotherapy and Consultation

3015 Hopyard Rd, Suite M

Pleasanton, CA 94588

Email: Vinodha.Joly@gmail.com


August 18, 2019



Rosie Phillips Davis, PhD, ABPP

President, American Psychological Association

750 First Street, NE

Washington, DC 20002-4242


Jared L. Skillings, PhD, ABPP

Chief of Professional Practice, American Psychological Association

750 First Street, NE

Washington, DC 20002-4242


Dear Dr. Davis and Dr. Skillings :

Re: Request to Treat Lyra Health’s Misleading Claims of “Evidence-Based Psychotherapy” as False Advertising and Discriminatory against Relationship-Oriented Clinicians

I recently wrote to the California Department of Insurance about misleading claims of “evidence-based” psychotherapy by Lyra Health, a startup mental health company. Please find attached a copy of the letter. A copy of the letter can also be found online at https://www.vinodhatherapy.com/blogs/false-advertising-by-lyrahealth

I was redirected to your organization, the American Psychological Association, as the authority on this issue. Lyra Health cites the APA Clinical Guidelines in its advertising for providing “evidence-based” psychotherapy exclusively, as well as in its selection criteria that explicitly excludes attachment-oriented clinicians as providers on its panels. Their policies mislead the consumers of mental health services and restrict their choices, and adversely affect the professionals in this field who work from an attachment oriented relationship framework by delegitimizing their practice.

I kindly request the American Psychological Association and the other professional organizations copied in this letter to look into this matter, and to make a clear stand against Lyra Health’s misleading and discriminatory practices and its misuse and misunderstanding of the APA Clinical Guidelines, as their policies ultimately hurt the consumers of mental health services.

Thank you.


Vinodha Joly, LMFT



 Timothy F. Dwyer

President, American Association of Marriage and Family Therapists

112 South Alfred Street

Alexandria, VA 22314-3061 


Laura Groshong, MSW, LICSW
Director of Policy and Practice, Clinical Social Work Association

4026 NE 55th Street #C
Seattle, Washington 98105


Saul Levin, MD, MPA

Chief Executive Officer, American Psychiatric Association

800 Maine Avenue, S.W., Suite 900

Washington, DC 20024


Kathryn Conley Wehrmann, PhD, MSW, LCSW

President, National Association of Social Workers

750 First Street, NE Suite 800

Washington, DC 20002



This endeavor is supported and endorsed by Psychotherapy Action Network (Psian.org).