Does Health Insurance Cover Mental Health?

Part of my consulting work in the State of Georgia exposed me to many of the issues and complexities around reimbursement and payment for mental health services, the availability of providers, and health insurance coverage limits for mental health services. On top of all these moving parts, there’s also a lingering social stigma around mental health causing those who may benefit from services to not seek them out. Hopefully, here in the US, we can begin making changes to eliminate that social stigma, improve availability of services and providers, and work with payers to improve coverage and reimbursement for mental health services.

I recently sat down with the good folks over at QuoteWizard to discuss nuances in the health insurance market here in the US, specifically around mental health, counseling, and therapy coverage.

You can check out the whole article here.

Here’s an excerpt:

What does the law say about health insurance and therapy or counseling?

There are a few U.S. laws that address health insurance coverage of counseling or therapy.

One noteworthy example is the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act. “The law requires insurance companies to cover mental health issues at the same (or better) level as most physical issues,” said Rafael E. Salazar II, President and CEO of Rehab U Practice Solutions

The federal parity law doesn’t apply to Medicare coverage, though. It also doesn’t apply to some state government employee plans.

“What is important to know is that this law does not require insurance companies to cover mental health disorders. It only applies to insurance providers that cover mental health in addition to physical health,” says Salazar II. “Most major group insurances will cover mental health disorders, and all of the insurances on the exchange allow for coverage of mental health, but it does not mean that every carrier in the US covers mental health.”

Read the whole article here!

Have you ever dealt with insurance payments, reimbursements, or coverage for mental health services? Are there any trends you’ve noticed with mental health services and insurance coverage here in the US?  Share any additional resources that you found helpful in the comments below!

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Rafael E. Salazar II, MHS, OTR/L is the president and CEO of Rehab U Practice Solutions. He has experience in a variety of rehab settings, working with patients recovering from a variety of injuries and surgeries. He worked as the lead clinician in an outpatient specialty clinic at his local VA Medical center. He also has experience as an adjunct faculty instructor at Augusta University’s Occupational Therapy Program, as a Licensed Board Member on the GA State OT Board, has served on several committees for the national OT Board (NBCOT), and as a consultant for the State of Georgia. He is also on the Board of Directors for NBCOT.

Read his full bio Here. Read about Rehab U Here.


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