What Do Those Letters After a Therapist’s Name Mean?

There are several professional licenses recognized by the State of Colorado in the area of mental health treatment.  They are:

  • LCSW = Licensed Clinical Social Worker;
  • LMFT = Licensed Marriage/Family Therapist;
  • LPC = Licensed Professional Counselor;
  • PhD = This is usually a Clinical Psychologist, most of whom put the term “psychologist” after their name;
  • MD = Doctor of Medicine (for psychiatrists); 
  • APN = Advanced Practice Psychiatric Nurse

Note that the term “psychotherapist” is broad and very general.  All of the above providers are  psychotherapists, but not all psychotherapists are licensed to practice.  Colorado recognizes non-licensed mental health providers as “registered psychotherapists.”  Colorado also certifies some specialties such as alcohol/drug counseling (look for the initials CAC), domestic violence offender treatment (no initials), and sexual offender treatment (again, no initials).