When people ask us if we take insurance for counseling, that indicates to us that they have been misinformed about their policies. Many do not read the fine print about what they do, cover, or protect. This is not to demean insurance companies, but rather to educate you.
Insurance. What is it good for?
Obviously a practice or arrangement by which a company or government agency provides a guarantee of compensation for specified loss, damage, illness, or death in return for payment of a premium. If you’re ill, the insurance company will compensate you or the medical provider for services rendered.
Sounds great, but what’s the catch?
There have been many cases where insurance companies will not cover couples counseling, marriage counseling, anxiety issues, depression issues, self improvement/ coaching, relationship issues, etc. You’re on your own when it comes to this.
Why? Basically, the insurance policy tends to only cover medical issues. For example: If you have the flu, you’re covered. If you fall and break your arm, you’re covered, but if you are experiencing stress at work, you may not be covered. Why? Because stress is not an illness or disease. Now, if you get ulcers because of stress, you’re covered for the ulcers.
On the other hand, some can go to a psychiatrist to get a diagnosis for an illness or disease and more than likely will be prescribed drugs to cope. We strongly discourage this for most people as drugs are only numbing the stress in your life and not dealing with it appropriately. We’ve seen cases where the drugs worsened the counselee, but let’s say you take this option.
Did you know that the insurance company dictates how long they’ll cover you? What if the psychiatrist deems you as “greatly improved” and the insurance company takes that as “patient healed”? They will stop coverage immediately and now your stranded without the appropriate help you need.
Oh by the way, if an insurance company is involved, what happens to your privacy? Rather than privacy staying between you and the counselor, an entire insurance company knows your private business not counting who else they (have to) share your information with, as they are considered “medical records”. They might be shared with other agencies, hospitals, or used in court against you.
We don’t consider insurance companies evil, but we just want you to know some of their limitations which may apply to you. Consider the necessity of your well being and the value of your privacy. At Finally Alive Counseling Ministries, you’d be surprised how flexible we are. Just call us and see for yourself.