BetterHelp vs Doctor On Demand

If you’re here, it is likely because you are looking for the best online therapy service for you or a loved one. Getting the help we need for our mental and behavioral health is an important part of living a fulfilling and successful life. Unfortunately, it can be pretty overwhelming trying to find the best tele-therapy company for you.

There are hundreds of online alternatives to traditional in-person therapy. We want to make learning about these services easy and genuine. That’s why we’ve put together in-depth reviews, cost analysis, and service comparisons. Two of these companies – BetterHelp and Dr. On Demand – are the subject of our comparative research, today.

We will look at what services each company offers, their pricing structure, usability, and even their security and privacy features. If you are considering either of these companies for your online therapy needs, read on and see how they truly compare.

Key Differences Between BetterHelp and Dr. On Demand

  • BetterHelp does not maintain any Psychiatrists (MD holders) on staff, whereas Dr. On Demand and Psychiatrists and Medical Doctors on staff.
  • Dr. On Demand charges per visit vs. charging a membership fee that includes unlimited contact features.
  • BetterHelp allows users to sign up anonymously.
  • It is far more likely that your services at Doctor On Demand can be covered by insurance.

Comparing the Services Offered

What’s the Same

  • Both Dr. On Demand and BetterHelp provide access to licensed therapists and psychologists.
  • Both services offer service every day of the week.
  • BetterHelp and Dr. On Demand both utilize simple pricing to help you understand exactly how much your services will cost.
  • Both Doctor On Demand and BetterHelp can help you find additional mental health resources if necessary.
  • Both services take client security and privacy very seriously.

What’s Different

  • Dr. On Demand offers psychiatry and urgent care medical services
  • BetterHelp has therapists available 24/7.
  • Dr. On Demand is covered by a large number of insurances, including Medicare. 
  • BetterHelp has overall lower pricing for those needing consistent access to therapy. 
  • Dr. On Demand offers in-depth screening for behavior and mental health issues.
  • BetterHelp has onsite options for group therapy.

As you compare the numbers of these two online therapy services, you might already have made up your mind on who to pick. However, for those of you who are still unsure of which way to lean, here are a few other details to take into account. Dr. On Demand does have additional fees to consider as compared to BetterHelp. This includes appointment cancellation fees and fees to add time to a visit. However, they make up for these fees by providing licensed psychiatrists and accepting most major insurances.

BetterHelp has a lot to offer as well. Their monthly pricing includes one live session a week along with unlimited text, audio, and video messaging. Though their services are usually not covered by insurance, their pricing can still come out to far less than a traditional therapist for those who seek consistent and repeat therapeutic service.

The easiest way to determine which service is for you is to ask yourself how often you want to have access to your therapist. Do you think you will need to message them every day after work? If you want to find the best price for multiple monthly sessions and unlimited chatting, you should look at BetterHelp. If you are looking for a one off session, or need advanced services like psychiatric evaluation, you will want to check out Doctor On Demand.

Do you need more in-depth information before taking that leap? Check out our in-depth reviews of BetterHelp and Dr. On Demand to learn even more about what these companies have to offer.

The Price Difference – BetterHelp vs. Dr. On Demand

Key Takeaways

  • BetterHelp uses a membership pricing structure that includes video sessions for $240-$360/month.
  • Dr. On Demand charges per consultation. Therapy starts at $79 dollars a session ($179 for initial meeting).
  • BetterHelp’s pricing does not include psychiatry services or the ability to be prescribed medication.
  • Doctor On Demand’s psychiatry services cost $299 for the initial consultation.
  • BetterHelp is highly unlikely to be able to accept insurance.
  • Dr. On Demand costs additional money if you need more than the allotted appointment time.
  • BetterHelp can be canceled at any time and doesn’t require any long term contracts.

BetterHelp Cost

PlanWeekly CostMonthly CostFeatures
4 Week Plan$60 - $90$240 - $360 Unlimited text, video, audio messaging + 1 live session per week

Dr. On Demand Cost

Type of ServiceSession LengthPrice
Therapy/Psychology (Initial)50 minutes$179
Therapy/Psychology (Follow-Up)25 minutes$79
Psychiatry (Initial)45 minutes$299
Psychiatry (Follow-Up)15 minutes$129

The Bottomline on the Cost Comparison

Dr. On Demand’s face value cost comes in lower than BetterHelp for therapy services, but that can be a bit misleading. If you are using your therapy services on a regular basis, you may actually spend far less with a BetterHelp membership.

BetterHelp users can contact their therapist at any time and don’t receive a cap to their general communication. They are also allotted one video session per week. On the other hand, Doctor On Demand charges per timed visit. So, if your therapy costs $79 a session ($179 for initial one), and you want to see your therapist once a week, you will be spending $416/ month.

If you are only interested in seeing your therapist a couple times a month, or sporadically as you need them, Dr. On Demand is considerably cheaper than BetterHelp. They also have the added benefit of having on-staff psychiatrists that can potentially prescribe medication (non-controlled substances) and handle advanced mental and behavioral health issues. This service comes in under the national average at a surprisingly low $299, with follow up visits costing $129.

Who is BetterHelp Better For?

BetterHelp App Screenshots
  • Those who use online therapy services multiple times a month.
  • Patients who want to be matched to a therapist based on their needs.
  • Those who might need to talk in the middle of the night.
  • Individuals who prefer to text their therapist in between live sessions.
  • Patients who like having unlimited access to features for a single, easy to remember price.

Who is Doctor On Demand Better For?

Doctor on Demand App Screenshots
  • Individuals who want one off therapy sessions without a monthly commitment
  • Those who need access to psychiatric care along with basic therapy. 
  • Patients needing mental health screenings prior to engaging in therapy or psychiatric treatment.
  • Those who only plan to see their therapist only once or twice a month.
  • Anyone who prefers to research their therapist options before making an appointment. 
Doctor on Demand Logo