Insurance Companies and Substance Abuse Treatment
The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) was put in place for all insurance companies to include adequate substance abuse treatment in their policies. Recently, Jeffery Wilkins, President of the California Society of Addiction Medicine, wrote an article stating that Obama’s administration has made a decision to allow states to individually dictate basic benefits of this health care act; which in turn will mean watering down substance abuse treatment benefits.
The article continues to discuss how insurance companies have always paid little to no attention to those who needed substance abuse treatment. In 2007, the state of California did a survey on drug use and health to find out that there were 3 million people who didn’t receive treatment for drug and alcohol abuse. Wilkins also noted in his article, Addiction Treatment Must Be Part of Reform, “Insurance companies have victimized people with addiction by arbitrarily limiting doctor visits and lengths of treatment, charging higher co-pays and insisting on punishing pre-authorizations.”
Addiction involves relapse and although it can be difficult to treat, addiction is a treatable disease. It should not be discriminated against by insurance companies. If someone is paying their insurance company, they should be able to receive ample treatment regardless of the issue.