In recent years there have been a number of changes to American healthcare. The Affordable Care Act (ACA), in combination with the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act, has given people both coverage and access to substance use disorder treatment. While both bills have done a lot of good in a time rife with prescription opioid and heroin addiction, there has been some scandals associated with certain treatment providers.
In 2014, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) raided two treatment facilities in Palm Beach County, Florida. The two facilities were involved in rampant patient brokering, insurance fraud and kickbacks. Millions of dollars were pocketed by overcharging insurance companies for procedures that cost relatively nothing, collecting thousands of dollars for a single urine analysis.
Last month, at conference for addiction treatment providers in Naples, Florida, one of the main topics of discussion was about addiction treatment facilities self-policing so that the U.S. Department of Justice does not, The Palm Beach Post reports. In the wake of the 2014 scandal, the insurance company Cigna pulled out of the Florida treatment marketplace and other insurance companies now delay or refuse to compensate claims for substance use disorder treatment.
“I’m really scared that if we don’t do something to clean up our act we’re going to get hammered and there is a real possibility that we’re going to get shut down,” said Jim Bevell, owner of the Treatment Solutions Network in Fort Lauderdale. “Until we can put our egos aside and actually come together for the best of the industry rather than our own best interest … we’re all going to be out.”
While there was lot of negative discussion about both insurance companies and shady treatment facilities, there was some good that came out of the conference, according to the article. The conference attendees managed to come to an agreement about possible solutions to the Florida treatment conundrum, such as:
- Establish clinical guidelines for how often and when recovering addicts should be tested with urine drug screens.
- Create an industry coalition to develop ethical standards, police members and represent the industry in negotiations with insurance companies.
- Sponsor and pay for research to prove the effectiveness of specific treatments — something insurance companies rely upon in determining coverage.
After reading this, we hope that you do not become discouraged about addiction treatment in Florida. A few bad apples are not representative of the whole, everyday people get the help they need and manage to turn their lives around – living a life free from drugs and alcohol. When looking for a treatment center that is a the right fit, there are a few tools we can provide you with that may help assist you in the decision making process.
Finding the right drug rehab should include the following criteria:
- Find an addiction rehab that is licensed by the appropriate governmental agencies.
- Find an addiction rehab that has a clear vision for creating an individual treatment plan for each client that is also creative and innovative.
- Find an addiction rehab that has expertise in diagnosing and treating dual diagnosis disease.
- Find an addiction rehab that has developed a family approach for a family problem
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