Ever since I started working in this field, I’ve talked to people who have had their treatment determined and dictated by insurance companies rather than health care professionals. When I began to engage in policy work at the state level, I was astounded by the number of people who told me horror stories about the limited amount of care (too short), different (wrong) level of care than was professionally recommended, or altogether denied.
One mother has had enough, and she has found a lawyer that is willing to bring a class action lawsuit against the insurance companies. She needs to hear from others who have dealt with similar problems. Her message, form, and email address is below.
I am not part of this lawsuit because I want to be able to write, speak and testify on behalf of it. I am sharing this information to help Valerie get this started. It is a worthy cause that I hope hundreds of people take part in. This is America. You can get justice.
DO YOU KNOW OF SOMEONE WHOSE ADDICTION AND/OR MENTAL HEALTH TREATMENT WAS DENIED OR CUT SHORT BY THEIR HEALTH INSURANCE COMPANY? INSURANCE COMPANIES FREQUENTLY VIOLATE FEDERAL AND STATE PARITY LAWS BY DISCRIMINATING AGAINST PEOPLE WITH ADDICTION AND/OR MENTAL HEALTH PROBLEMS.
PARITY LAWS REQUIRE THAT PEOPLE NEEDING TREATMENT FOR ADDICTION AND/OR MENTAL HEALTH ARE TREATED IN THE SAME WAY AS A PATIENT NEEDING TREATMENT FOR A PHYSICAL ILLNESS SUCH AS DIABETES, CANCER OR HEART DISEASE.
Four years ago, when our sons were teenagers, they became addicted to opiates and other substances. We tried to get them into the programs their addiction specialist recommended but their treatment was denied by our health insurance which claimed that their conditions did not meet the medical necessity criteria. We have been working through the lengthy and exhausting appeals process since then. We feel very grateful that we were able to find the funds to pay for their life-saving treatment but we know that many others cannot do this and as a result, without treatment their or their loved one’s disease progresses with outcomes such as jail or death. We believe that our sons’ treatment was denied wrongfully and we know there are many others who are in our position.
We have found an attorney who is willing to bring these denials to the attention of the New Jersey Attorney General’s office, (at no cost) so that an investigation of these denials can begin. Hopefully changes will be put in place to ensure that treatment is provided properly by insurance companies in compliance with Federal and State Parity Laws. Please let me know if your or your loved one’s treatment was denied also, by answering the questions below and returning them to me at:
Every life is valuable. Together we can make changes to save lives.
Type of treatment denied: Outpatient______ Inpatient________
Was treatment denied _________ or cut short________________ (how many days/weeks were approved?) ____________________
Was treatment for addiction? _________ mental health? ______________ both? _________
What year was treatment denied? ______________
Which State do you live in? ____________________
Name of health insurance which denied treatment: _________________
What happened to the patient as the result of the denial of this treatment? _____________________
How may I contact you? First Name: _________________ Email address: _________________