Every American deserves access to mental health support that is effective and affordable. A new survey released today by AHIP highlights how health insurance providers are improving access to mental health care by bringing more quality providers into their networks, training and supporting primary care physicians (PCPs) to care for patients with mild to moderate health condition. and helps patients find available health appointments.
“Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, millions of Americans struggled with mental health and substance use issues,” he said.
When health care providers join health plan networks, care becomes more affordable and providers are more accountable for quality. Offering plans with a wide variety of in-network mental health professionals makes effective mental health support more affordable and accessible. And by integrating mental health care with primary care, health insurance providers are partnering with doctors and mental health professionals to meet patients where they are and offer care that is more continuous, holistic and effective.
Key findings of the survey include:
* All respondents (100%) provide coverage for tele-behavioral health services.
* The number of in-network behavioral health providers among commercial health plans increased by an average of 48% over 3 years.
* The vast majority of health plans (89%) are actively recruiting mental health providers, including professionals who reflect the diversity of the people they serve (83%), and 78% have increased provider payments in an effort to attract more high-quality professionals to their plan networks.
* The number of providers authorized to prescribe medication-assisted therapy (MAT) for the treatment of substance use disorders, including opioid dependence, has more than doubled—up 114% in 3 years.
* A strong majority (72%) of plans are training and supporting PCPs in the care of patients with mild/moderate medical conditions.
* A large majority (83%) of plans report helping enrollees find available mental and behavioral health appointments.
* A large majority (78%) use dedicated case managers for follow-up after emergency and inpatient care and/or after initiation of new medication.
* More than half of Americans, nearly 180 million, have employer coverage for their health care needs – offering an essential pathway to access much-needed mental health support.
“Health insurance providers are taking steps to improve mental health care by proactively identifying the health needs of their members, working with providers and reducing stigma,” Berry continued. “While much work has been done, health insurance providers recognize the need to address systemic challenges. This can only be achieved by all healthcare stakeholders working together to ensure Americans have affordable access to the high-quality mental health support they deserve. .” “
AHIP conducted a survey of mental health coverage in the commercial market in May-
* * *
* * *
Original text here: https://www.ahip.org/news/press-releases/new-survey-shows-strong-action-by-health-insurance-providers-to-growing-mental-health-care-demands