Athena Care
Does Blue Cross Blue Shield Cover Mental Health Services in Tennessee?

Does Blue Cross Blue Shield Cover Mental Health Services in Tennessee?

Yes, Blue Cross Blue Shield (BCBS) of Tennessee insurance may cover mental and behavioral health services depending on your insurance plan’s benefits and individual needs.

How to Verify Blue Cross Blue Shield Mental Health Benefits 

Athena Care is in-network with most major insurance plans. Find out more about your insurance coverage by calling your insurance company or by contacting us below. One of our care coordinators can help you navigate your insurance coverage to get the care you need.

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Which Mental Health Services Are Covered by Blue Cross Blue Shield? 

BCBS mental health coverage encompasses a variety of programs and resources for mental and behavioral health. The following is a partial list1 of services that your BCBS mental health benefits may cover: 

Which Mental Health Conditions Are Covered by BCBS? 

The following mental health conditions2 may be covered by Blue Cross Blue Shield insurance in Tennessee: 

  • ADHD 
  • Antipsychotic Medications 
  • Anxiety Disorders 
  • Bipolar Disorder 
  • Depression and Suicide Risk 
  • Post-Hospitalization 
  • Schizophrenia 
  • Substance Use Disorders 
  • Trauma 

How To Find Mental Health Services Near Me in Tennessee? 

With Athena Care, gaining access to mental health assessments and treatments in Tennessee has never been easier. A care coordinator can assist you at one of our various Tennessee locations.

When choosing a mental health provider, keep the following in mind: 

  • Education, training, license, and years of experience 
  • Specialties and services offered 
  • Treatment methods and philosophies 
  • Insurance companies they work with 
  • Office hours 
  • Pricing 
  • Session length 

Also, don’t be afraid to ask questions. 

Athena Care mental health clinics are open Monday through Friday, 7:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.

Here you’ll find a list of practitioners organized by city, along with information about their backgrounds and specialties. 

Athena Care offers a full-spectrum of mental and behavioral health services to those in Tennessee.

We have qualified therapists and accept many of the big name insurance providers. Our locations are open Monday-Friday from 7am to 6pm. Learn more below:

Am I Still Covered if I Travel or Move to Another State? 

The majority of Blue Cross Blue Shield members may rest easy knowing that their coverage is accepted by over 90% of doctors and specialists in all 50 states.3 In addition, if your vacation plans take you abroad, GeoBlue can ensure that you have access to high-quality medical care. 

If you have Blue Cross Blue Shield insurance in another state outside of Tennessee, BCBS coverage does not change if you choose to get services or treatment in Tennessee. The only difference is that Blue Cross Blue Shield will process your claim in the state you receive services in. So, if you cross state lines to get mental health services in Tennessee, BCBS of TN will process the claim instead of your home provider. 

About Blue Cross Blue Shield: History & Plans 

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Tennessee, established in 1945, is a mission-driven, not-for-profit health plan provider. They now serve 3.4 million individuals throughout the state and the country.4 

Individual and family plans, as well as employer and government-funded policies, are all available through BCBS. In addition, PPO (Preferred Provider Organization), Consumer-Directed Health Plans (CDHP), HMO (Health Maintenance Organization), and others may be available according to your area.  

  • Medicaid (BlueCare TN): This federal and state-funded program assists low-income persons, providing resources for healthcare costs. TennCare offers two different plans: BlueCare and TennCareSelect.5 
  • Medicare: a health insurance program for adults over 65 and those receiving Social Security disability benefits. 
  • Medicaid with Medicare (BluePlus): This $0 premium, $0 co-pay plan includes all of the advantages of Original Medicare and Medicaid, plus additional assistance from a multidisciplinary team.6 
  • Individual and Family Health Plans: Whether you want to spend less each month or have greater control over your total costs, BCBS offers three different levels7 of coverage for individuals and families:
    • Bronze: This may be an excellent plan for you if you don’t go to the doctor very often or don’t have many medications. Even if the cost of care is higher, your monthly cost is lower.  
    • Silver: This level strikes a better balance between the amount you’ll pay each month and the out-of-pocket expenses when you receive care. It’s also the plan to choose if you need financial assistance.  
    • Gold: This may be the plan for you if you visit the doctor frequently or have many medications. You’ll pay a little more each month for more coverage, but you’ll spend less on healthcare. 

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Tennessee vs. BlueCare Tennessee vs. TennCare 

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Tennessee, BlueCare Tennessee, and TennCare are commonly confused with one another. The following are the differences between the three: 

  • Blue Cross Blue Shield of Tennessee is the health insurance provider and administrator of Blue Cross Blue Shield insurance in Tennessee.  
  • BlueCare8 is one of two TennCare plans. Your age and benefit level determine your insurance coverage. 
  • TennCare is Tennessee’s Medicaid program that serves low-income pregnant women, parents or guardians of minor children, children, and the elderly or disabled. 

Does Blue Cross Blue Shield Cover Virtual Therapy? 

Yes, BCBS can cover virtual therapy. This includes a 24/7 Crisis Line for mental health emergencies and access to health professionals for support and answers when you need them most. 

Do I Need a Referral To Use My BCBS Coverage?  

No, you do not need a referral with Blue Cross Blue Shield insurance for outpatient mental health services.  

Most providers know which services require approval and call before providing care.9 

Can I Make a Same-Day Appointment With a BCBS Provider? 

In many cases, same-day appointments are available. 

How Much Do Mental Health Services & Testing Cost?

Costs can vary depending on your specific Blue Cross Blue Shield mental health coverage and personalized treatment needs. The following are average costs for therapy, though they may vary by location and other variables and may not reflect the actual cost of treatment or what you may actually pay. 

For example, In the United States, the typical cost of psychotherapy ranges from $100 to $20010 a session, dependent upon the state and the length of the session. With health insurance, you’ll most likely have a co-pay that can range from a few dollars to $50 or more a session.  

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) sessions are typically 45+ minutes long and cost between $100 and $200 per session, while Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT) usually consists of a weekly individual therapy session, a weekly group therapy session, and weekly phone conversations. DBT costs vary depending on the type of services rendered. 

Such factors, like whether the therapist is in-network or out of network, can influence this out-of-pocket cost. 

Even with insurance, you will normally have to pay some or all of your medical expenditures until your total medical expenses for the year reach the deductible. Depending on your plan, you may be required to pay a co-pay or coinsurance for each treatment. 

Some therapists will work with patients on a sliding scale for those who do not present insurance. If you find a therapist who offers a sliding scale payment plan, they will most likely base the cost of your sessions on your income. This sliding scale can also vary from therapist to therapist.  


  1. “Behavioral Health Levels of Care Program Descriptions.” BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee, 2018, https://www.bcbst.com/docs/providers/levels-of-care-program-description.pdf
  2. “Behavioral Health – Supporting Mind and Body.” BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee, Inc., 2022, https://provider.bcbst.com/working-with-us/behavioral-health/ 
  3. “Coverage That Goes Where You Go: Travel Worry-Free With Blue Cross Blue Shield.”  BlueCross BlueShield, 2022, https://www.bcbs.com/articles/coverage-goes-where-you-go-travel-worry-free-blue-cross-blue-shield
  4. “BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee News Center.” BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee, Inc., 2022, https://bcbstnews.com/mediaresources/bluecross-by-the-numbers/ 
  5. “Plans and Programs – All The Important Details in One Place.” BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee, Inc., 2022, https://bluecare.bcbst.com/plans-programs/bluecaretn 
  6. “MEDICARE WITH MEDICAID (BLUECARE PLUS) PLAN.” BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee, Inc., 2022, https://bluecareplus.bcbst.com/ 
  7. “Individual & Family Plans.” BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee, Inc., 2022, https://www.bcbst.com/our-plans/individual-family-plans  
  8. “Plans and Programs – All The Important Details in One Place.” BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee, Inc., 2022, https://bluecare.bcbst.com/plans-programs/bluecaretn/#bluecare?cm_sp=cta-_-body_link-_-bluecare 
  9. “Behavioral Health – Supporting Mind and Body.” BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee, Inc., 2022, https://provider.bcbst.com/working-with-us/behavioral-health/ 
  10. Lauretta, Ashley. “How Much Does Therapy Cost?” edited by Alena Hall, Forbes Health, 2021, https://www.forbes.com/health/mind/how-much-does-therapy-cost/

If you suspect that you or someone you love suffers from mental health disorders, contact Athena Care today.

One of our friendly associates will help you get the help you need. Take this first step to feel better and take control. 

(615) 320-1155