An analysis of our data show that women clinicians are much better at engaging new patients in treatment than are male clinicians. We define engagement as coming for follow up treatment after an initial intake. We wanted to focus on non-medical providers, so we looked at Diagnostic Evaluation without a medical component (90791) between January 1, 2013 and September 30, 2013. Our data came from 13 practices that had been using Carepaths for at least 6 months as of the first of 2013. We limited our sample to patients who were first entered into the Carepaths database in 2013 because we wanted to minimize the number of patients who may have had a prior episode of care with these providers. We considered a patient to have been engaged in treatment if they received any service other than the 90791 during between January 1, 2013 and December 31, 2013. Patients who did not receive another service before the end of 2013, were classified as not engaging in treatment.

Below is a table summarizing findings from 9 months of de-identified data from 2013. The sample size was N=4285; 122 clinicians of which 97 were women and 25 were men. In interpreting these results it should be borne in mind that the number of male clinicians is low and the variability in number of intakes without engagement highly variable among the sample. We also have no way of identifying cases seen intentionally for evaluation only.


The results, in a word, are eye-popping. Women therapists are much better at establishing and facilitating a therapeutic relationship with patients, male or female, than are male therapists. Interestingly, both male and female therapists did slightly better with their own gender patients.

It is of note that men represent an increasingly small percentage of the country’s psychiatrists, psychologists, therapists, and social workers: less than 20% of students in Master’s degrees in psychology, clinical social work or counseling are men. Today 76% of all new doctorate level psychologists are female; in 1975 70% of all psychology doctorates went to men.