|The Christian Counseling and Educational
Foundation (CCEF) is located in Glenside, Pennsylvania
and is connected to Westminster Theological Seminary in
Philadelphia. We were told recently that CCEF is involved
in third party (insurance) payments for counseling done
under Ed Welch, a licensed psychologist who is the CCEF
director of counseling services. We wrote to Welch and
asked him if what we heard is true. He wrote back, but
refused to answer our question. We then faxed him a
letter and explained that we wanted to be accurate in
what we wrote. He still did not respond.
We then asked someone in the CCEF area to obtain the information. The individual called and received a letter from CCEF. The following is a quote from the letter, which is apparently sent to anyone who asks:
We have called several national insurance companies and asked if Biblical counseling is covered under any of their plans. In each instance, we were told no. We do not pretend to know what all insurance companies do, but we were told by the insurance companies we called that a diagnosis is required before counseling can begin. The diagnosis is required to be from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM). The DSM contains a list of mental disorders that are used to psychologically label individuals for psychiatric and psychological treatment.
There is a whole host of questions that individuals should be interested in having answered. And, because CCEF is a "Christian" nonprofit agency, it should be open to answering. For example, which insurance companies are involved? Do these insurance companies cover Biblical counseling? Do the insurance companies involved in reimbursing CCEF clients require a DSM label? Has Welch used the DSM to psychologically label clients in order to qualify for insurance payments? What do the involved insurance companies require of Welch?
CCEF purports to do Biblical, not psychological counseling. How, then, do they qualify clients for payments? How much of the $500,000 in counseling fees received annually by CCEF is from insurance payments reimbursed to clients? We ask these questions and raise the issue publicly, because Welch has been unwilling to respond.
* This report has been excerpted and/or adapted from an article by the same name in the September-October 1997 PsychoHeresy Awareness Letter (PsychoHeresy Awareness Ministries, 4137 Primavera Road, Santa Barbara, CA 93110).
Update from November-December 1997 PsychoHeresy Awareness Letter :
In the above article, the Bobgans reported on a
seeming discrepancy between what is advertised and
promoted at CCEF and what clients are reimbursed for.
Though claiming to be Biblical counselors at CCEF,
several insurance companies have stated that Biblical
counseling was not covered in their
Because of the lack of cooperation on the part of Welch and CCEF, Dr. Bobgan decided to investigate further. He located an insurance company where Welch is a designated provider. He spoke with two representatives from that company and found out many things, such as:
Dr. Bobgan privately confronted Welch and CCEF with his
questions in hopes of making sense out of the seeming
contradiction between what CCEF claims to do and what the
insurance companies have said. Welch is a licensed
psychologist, expected by the insurance companies to
function within the scope of his license as a
psychologist by providing psychological services to his
clients, and he must even provide mental health labels
for the treatment. We believe he is doing so.
Biblical Discernment Ministries - 12/97