Insurance Companies Balking To Pay For Mental Illnesses

1005 words - 5 pages

“Insurance companies often cover mental illness in a more limited fashion than physical illness” (Christensen). The lack of mental health care provided for the mentally ill has been a growing issue in the US during the previous years, and there has been some progress. For example, there has been the Mental Health Care and Parity Law of 2008 that was enacted so that the insurers would cover mental illness just as they would cover other illnesses. In addition, the Affordable Care Act was enacted to enforce that the insurers abide by the rules. Unfortunately, that hasn’t helped much, hence: the sneaky behavior of insurance companies. This sneaky behavior seems to be unnoticed by the government ...view middle of the document...

This is just one of many cases where insurers balk to pay insurance for a mentally ill person by finding a “reasonable” excuse to do so. They are basically saying that she is a lost cause. Insurers have done this over a dozen times. The thing is that they are breaking the law by finding loopholes to deny and reject health care to an eligible patient. That being the case, the patient’s mother, Ms. Morelli, decided to file a lawsuit against her insurance company. Eventually, she won and Melissa spent 10 months in the hospital, insured. Although this issue was resolved, it didn’t come cheap. Melissa’s treatment cost over hundreds of thousands of dollars (Ibid).
While the Morelli Family’s case was eventually resolved, many families have not been so fortunate. In Mr. Smith’s case, he did not bother to fight against their insurance company. According to the New York Times, his teenage son suffered from severe depression and was urged to consider residential treatment for him. He was then hospitalized, involuntarily. UnitedHealth, an insurance company, agreed to pay for the care but then stopped after nine days. In the letter sent to the boys parents, they said “stopping the treatment created only ‘limited risk’ that the teenager would return to the hospital” and that there is “‘no expectation of further improvements in the shorter term’” (Abelson). They are reluctant to pay for the care because apparently, even if they do insure his treatment, he won’t get better (Ibid). This claim, however, is speculative. Mr. Smith had to take care of his son so he paid over $100,000 for his son’s treatment. He then had a huge debt to pay and had to sell his house. The only good outcomes of all of this were that his son was back and better than he was before. Mr. Smith said, “It was, oh my God, we’ve got this kid back” (Ibid). Unfortunately, along with getting his kid...

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