The Affordable Care Act (ACA), sometimes called “Obamacare,” was passed in 2008 but has taken several years to be implemented. The bill gives insurance to those who would not be able to afford it otherwise. There were an estimated 47 million Americans without health insurance in 2012 but the act, which was fully rolled out in 2014, aims to change that. After it's all said and done, it should also help people in the eastern part of our state get drug rehabilitation in Wilmington NC.
The ACA is a type of assistance program that is supposed to help those in a lower income bracket with little or no access to health care. The Medicaid program helps those living under the federal poverty line, but there was a whole group of people who didn’t qualify for that program yet were unable to secure their own insurance.
It was also created to help younger people who may be too old for their parent’s insurance but unable to get their own. The Congressional Budget Office reported that the ACA will provide insurance for 30-33 million people in the U.S. who didn’t have it before the bill was passed.
While there is a lot of controversy over the act, it does have some benefits when it comes to people seeking addiction treatment. Since the bill has been enacted, provisions have been made to cover addiction treatment.
There are nearly 23 million people in the U.S. dealing with an addiction to drugs or alcohol, but only two million of those suffering seek treatment. In most cases, people just don’t have the money to pay for it. Even if they have insurance, it may not cover all of it. Provisions made in the ACA are giving those people a chance to get help.
In 2008, the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act required health insurance to provide mental health and substance abuse treatment comparable to medical benefits for general care. This, in conjunction with the new guidelines under the ACA, makes addiction and mental health care a priority. Addiction is recognized as a disease, but now help in recovering from it is available. The legislation prohibits insurers from denying coverage to people with preexisting conditions, including substance abuse.
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) reports that by including people with preexisting illnesses, 32 million Americans will now be able to get substance abuse treatment as well as mental health services that they couldn’t previously. Treatment options that were limited before will also be expanded. There is also more availability of free screenings for mental illness and substance abuse, which weren’t widely available before.
If you think you may have a problem with drugs or alcohol, but aren’t sure, call us at Legacy of Wilmington. We’ve dealt with all kinds of substance abuse cases and understand that every situation is different. We can help you decide on a treatment plan that works with your life and meets your needs. Call us today and ask about our drug rehabilitation in Wilmington NC.
10 Essential Healthcare Elements
The ACA created a set of categories that insurance plans must cover called the Essential Health Benefits. Here’s a quick breakdown of them all:
1. Outpatient Care
This is when you go into a doctor’s office, you are treated and then you leave. It is basic health care and most insurance providers already covered it.
2. Emergency Care
When a situation arises and you need to go to a hospital because of a serious condition, you can be covered. In the past, there may have been extra charges or a preauthorization required before insurance would pay for it.
3. Prescription Drugs
All insurance plans must have some sort of prescription drug coverage, and must include at least one drug in each category and class listed in the official publication of approved medications, the U.S. Pharmacopeia.
Your insurance company must cover a percentage of the cost of your stay in a hospital if you have reached your out of pocket limit.
5. Preventive and Wellness Services
The idea behind this is that people who have routine checkups can catch problems before they become life threatening. Many plans offer one free “wellness visit” per year.
6. Laboratory Services
Preventative screenings must be covered under the new law, but patients can still be billed for diagnostic tests that are run to determine if you have an illness.
7. Pediatric Care
Anyone under 19 can get dental care twice a year; one eye exam and a pair of glasses or contacts per year.
8. Maternity and Newborn Care
Prenatal care is considered a preventative service and is provided at no cost. Childbirth and newborn care is covered, which had not been in the past.
9. Rehabilitative and Habilitative Services
Therapies to help a person walk or speak again after an injury are covered. It may also cover equipment needed for rehab. Habilitative services, which help people deal with long-term disabilities, were not covered in the past but are now.
10. Mental and Behavioral Health Services
Most plans didn’t cover mental health services, but under the new law, they are included. As with any service, there are limitations such as a certain number of therapy visits allowed each year. Behavioral health services include drug and alcohol addiction treatment programs are listed under this category, giving people with addiction problems the ability to seek help.
Addiction treatment will also be more widely available for those in prison. Many of the people in jail have substance abuse problems that were probably one of the reasons they ended up in the criminal justice system. While help was available before for those in jail, part of the problem was the lack of continued care when they finished their sentences and went back to the streets. There may be more money available for continuing treatment after someone is released from jail, which can help break the cycle.
According to obamacarefacts.com, when addiction is left untreated, it can cost the country 420 billion dollars each year in health care, criminal justice and lost productivity. The new guidelines of the ACA aim to help to reduce the cost of healthcare spending by addressing and treating addiction.
Holistic and Alternative Drug Rehabilitation in Wilmington NC | Legacy Freedom
If you’re considering getting treatment for a prescription drug problem, give us a call at Legacy Freedom Treatment Center in Wilmington, NC. There is no reason to be afraid to get help. Our caring admissions counselors can answer any questions you may have about our facility. We offer outpatient programs designed to let you continue to work and meet family obligations. Call us today to discuss the many treatment options we offer for drug rehabilitation in Wilmington NC. We have alternative therapies not found in other facilities that allow us to offer you an individualized program. Call us today to get started.