Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

2/8/2013 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Delays, denials of payment could last for months putting mentally disturbed at peril

Codes used to describe and bill for mental health treatment in the United States underwent an overhaul at the beginning of the New Year. The codes, produced by the American Medical Association are updated each year, but changes to only 30 codes have drastically affected mental health services, putting the nation's mentally at risk. 

The financial fallout for mental health services may force some providers to disrupt care, leaving mentally unstable patients on their own temporarily or longer, leading to a rush of new homeless people.

The financial fallout for mental health services may force some providers to disrupt care, leaving mentally unstable patients on their own temporarily or longer, leading to a rush of new homeless people.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

2/8/2013 (1 year ago)

Published in Health

Keywords: Mentally ill, codes, changes, billing, denials of payment, psychology


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The psychiatric codes were updated after lobbying by mental health care providers. They argued they weren't being paid enough to treat today's medically complex or seriously ill patients.
 
"So far, it's chaos," Deputy Executive Director for the American Psychological Association Randy Phelps says. "It's hard to evaluate how widespread this is."

The problem comes amid growing demands for better interventions with the mentally ill in the wake of shooting massacres in Colorado and Connecticut.

Sam Muszynski, director of the office of health care systems and financing for the American Psychiatric Association says that "compliance with treatment is a sketchy thing to begin with." Muszynski fears that financial fallout may force some providers to disrupt care, leaving mentally unstable patients on their own temporarily or longer, leading to a rush of new homeless people. "All it takes is one missed appointment," he added.

"There are some systems that aren't even ready to begin accepting claims," Nina Marshall, director of public policy for the National Council for Behavioral Health says. She's been inundated with calls and e-mails, not only from providers confused about how much to charge and when they'll get paid, but also from patients worried about care.

"I have heard from consumers saying that their providers can't provide the services," she said. "They're reaching out to me with real concerns."

"What has come out of managed care in mental health is they go in for three days, they're on meds, they're barely stabilized, and being treated by outpatient providers," Phelps said. "Nobody had reevaluated these codes for 30 years, but the world had changed tremendously."

Mental health providers say their insurance claims have been denied along with their payments withheld due to problems resulting from the changes.

Marc Milhander, a psychologist who co-owns a busy Niles, Mich., counseling center, is feeling the pressure.

"I've been paid for five hours of work for the month of January," Milhander says, who supports a staff of four and oversees 300 patients a month. "I just wrote a big, fat check out of my personal bank account to keep us afloat."

Federal estimates suggest that nearly 20 percent of the adult U.S. population has some form of mental illness.

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


2014 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for July 2014
Sports:
That sports may always be occasions of human fraternity and growth.
Lay Missionaries: That the Holy Spirit may support the work of the laity who proclaim the Gospel in the poorest countries.



Comments


More Health

A LOT OF TEETH! Doctors remove 232 teeth from mouth of teenager Watch

Image of Medicos have described the teenager's condition as

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

We've all had to suffer for several hours in a dental chair, but chances are that our worst experiences were nothing like that of an Indian teenager who had 232 teeth removed during a seven-hour operation. Now done to 28 teeth, the youth has a better chance for ... continue reading


SURPRISE! Study finds that obese kids in the U.S. see themselves as being skinny! Watch

Image of Curiously, researchers found that some obese children even believed that they were underweight.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Should it come as a surprise - or just another sad comment on the prevalence of obesity in the United States? A new study has found that children who are overweight or obese don't see themselves as being so. Researchers and medical experts says this needs to ... continue reading


NEW FEARS: Middle Eastern Respiratory Syndrome may be transmitted through air Watch

Image of In their research, scientists from King Fahd Medical Research Center in Saudi Arabia collected three air samples from a camel barn.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

There are new fears that the rapidly spreading virus, Middle Eastern respiratory The Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus, or MERS, may be an airborne virus - making the disease highly easy to transmit, and get. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - To ... continue reading


Light at end of tunnel? HIV epidemic could be contained by 2030 Watch

Image of While HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, continues to be an ongoing threat - more so in developing nations where education about its transmission is compromised, there now appears to be a light at the end of the tunnel.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

While HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, continues to be an ongoing threat - more so in developing nations where education about its transmission is compromised, there now appears to be a light at the end of the tunnel. According to the United Nations, new HIV ... continue reading


Dye now being used to detect dementia Watch

Image of Researchers from Duke University Medical Center in North Carolina, tested 152 patients older than 50 years of age to see if they could predict cognitive decline by tracking changes in the brain.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Dementia, like Alzheimer's is a disease that usually effects the elderly. In the manner of Alzheimer's plaque begins to collect in the brain at an advanced age. This drastically effects the patient's memory, cognitive ability and motor skills, with many winding ... continue reading


Breakthrough announced in hereditary condition that causes blindness Watch

Image of The age at which symptoms start is variable and the rate of deterioration often varies. In around half of all cases there are other family members with the condition.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Retinitis pigmentosa, or RP is an inherited, degenerative eye disease that causes severe vision impairment and frequently leads to blindness. Affecting around one in 3,000 to 4,000 people, scientists have moved closer to a breakthrough in "personalized" ... continue reading


Deadly plague than can be spread by coughing, sneezing infects Colorado man Watch

Image of Untreated plague is always fatal. Antibiotics have to be given within 24 hours of the first symptoms to reduce the chance of death.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

It's the first case of pneumonic plague seen in Colorado since 2004. A man there has been diagnosed with among the rarest and most fatal forms of the plague, an airborne version that can be spread through coughing and sneezing. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) ... continue reading


Sighs of relief after vials of smallpox found Watch

Image of The FBI is investigating how the samples ended up where they did.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

There were sighs of relief when someone made a discovery in a disused closet. Many thanked the Lord that it didn't fall into the wrong hands. An employee at the National Institutes of Health found vials of smallpox, the onetime scourge of humanity, in a storage ... continue reading


Birth control computer chip implanted under the skin 'could be on sale by 2018' Watch

Image of An international coalition of governments, companies, philanthropies and nonprofit organizations committed to providing family planning to 120 million more women in the world by 2020.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Long in gestation, the idea of a computer chip implanted under the skin to regulate fertility is now within throwing distance of becoming an actuality. The idea has been with us since the Nineties, and thanks to a nudge from Microsoft's Bill Gates, such as ... continue reading


New blood test could determine onset of Alzheimer's Watch

Image of The new blood test, which examines 10 proteins in the blood, can predict with 87 percent accuracy whether someone suffering memory problems will develop Alzheimer's within a year.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The memory-destroying condition known as Alzheimer's, preying chiefly on the elderly, has no known cure. However, after a decade of research, scientists at Oxford University and King's College London have identified 10 proteins that arise when a patient is due ... continue reading


All Health News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, First Kings 3:5, 7-12
5 At Gibeon Yahweh appeared to Solomon in a dream ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 119:57, 72, 76-77, 127-128, 129-130
57 My task, I have said, Yahweh, is to keep your ... Read More

Gospel, Matthew 13:44-52
44 'The kingdom of Heaven is like treasure hidden in ... Read More

Reading 2, Romans 8:28-30
28 We are well aware that God works with those who ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for July 27th, 2014 Image

St. Pantaleon
July 27: St Pantaleon came from Nicomedia, near the Black Sea, in Asia. ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter