Did you know that since 1949 May has been considered “Mental Health Month?” Mental health disorders are among the leading pre-exsisting conditions. Mental health disorders were second only to hypertension as the most commonly reported medical conditions among adults. Did you know that 4 million children and adolescents in this country suffer from a serious mental disorder that causes significant functional impairments at home, school or with peers? Half of all the mental disorders begin by age 14. In any given year, only 20 percent of children with mental disorders are identified and receive the correct mental health services.
When choosing your health insurance plan take a look at the benefits that are available with your insurance agent. Each private health insurance company will have a section in the policy explaining what they will or won’t cover in mental health. When you have a child with mental illness the only true desire a parent has is to see their child well. Diagnosis, treatment, and a physician that can help you and your child through this difficult time is the key to success. With the new health care reform law, you may add your child to your plan and that child cannot be denied. You may be rated up due to the medication that is taken or the treatment that is received but you must have the mental illness rider added to your plan or it has to be part of the plan already.
At Healthcare Solutions, we pride ourselves on having the most knowledgeable health insurance agents in the country. When you come to us, you become part of a team that truly believes that we have a plan for everybody. The interview that is conducted with you at the time of your appointment to see what plan best fits you is so important. That way you will have the peace of mind knowing that your child will have every chance to receive the best of the best when you seek treatment for mental illness. Below are some of the consequence of untreated mental disordered in children and adolescents.
School failure: approximate 50% of students age 14 and older who are living with mental illness drop out of high school. This is the highest dropout rate of any disability group.
Juvenile and Criminal Justice Involvement: youth with unidentified and untreated mental disorders also tragically end up in jails and prisons. According to a study funded by the National Institute of Mental Health, an alarming 65% of boys and 75% of girls in juvenile detention have at least one mental illness.
Suicide: Suicide is the third leading cause of death in ages 15 to 24. More teenagers and young adults die from suicide than from cancer, heart disease, AIDS, birth defects, stroke, pneumonia, influenza and chronic lung disease combined. Over 90 % of children and adolescents who commit suicide have mental disorders. In the United States in the year 2002, almost 4300 young people ages 10 to 24 died by suicide. Most importantly, states spend nearly $1 billion annually on medical costs associated with completed suicides and suicide attempts by youth up to 20 years of age.
This year, make it a tradition to contact your health insurance agent and review your policy. Take a long look at yourself and your family. Has there been trauma in your lives? Has there been an unexpected death? Do you see yourself or your child becoming more and more secluded from friends and family? Take the time to heal yourself and them by making sure that you are protected the way you deserve.