Thursday, February 19, 2009

Addiction and Insurance

I found an article on the PBS website talking about health insurance and the coverage for addiction. Even with the Wellstone and Domenci Parity bill passing, there still is a lot of room to grow in this world. Having dealt with this with a number of clients, insurance companies are still hesitant to pay for residential care, even when that is a clinical recommendation. Insurance companies, in general, want someone to FAIL in outpatient care before they are willing to pay, or look at paying for, residential treatment.
A quote from the PBS article: "We know that alcohol and drug addiction is a disease, yet we still have not integrated it into the health insurance system in a way that is meaningful," says William McColl, director of government relations for the National Association of Alcoholism and Drug Abuse Counselors.

We're in a tough spot. More people than ever need treatment, and still we have to fight daily to even have the disease of addiction recognized as something more than a weakness of willpower.

As we've seen with the AIDS movement and the GLBT movement in the last 20 years, equal rights and appropriate healthcare legislation can be passed when enough people are behind it. That's why I always push for advocacy; show the world that recovery works! To join the fight openly, check out Faces and Voices of Recovery. A good organization that needs more exposure and more members!

Last night I got the opportunity to record an online radio show with The Afflicted and Affected. Be sure to check them not; not quite sure when this will be posted, but I'll update when I know.

Here's an excerpt from the HBO special on addiction; the whole show is available through various clips on YouTube or on DVD.

Here's something funny.

As always, find me on Twitter or LinkedIn. Have a great day.

1 comment:

  1. Hey Mike,
    I've written numerous times about the fact that health insurance needs to start recognizing their responsibility in treating the disease of addiction. The sad thing is that if they thought about it enough private insurers, as well as government entities would realize that we would all SAVE money by funneling it into addiction treatment instead of paying for far more expensive hospitalizations, and long jail sentences.