Insurance is super confusing--it always has been. Reading the benefit explanation and plan book that is a million pages is no help either. It's almost like they don't want you to use your health insurance benefits you're paying for. Why hasn't an "Insurance for Dummies" book been written yet? Add me to that waitlist!
It's even more challenging when you are trying to be proactive, heading for a breakdown, and have just about exhausted your online search when... YOU FIND YOUR PERFECT THERAPIST! (cue music) But.. dun, dun, dun, it doesn't look like the therapist takes your insurance.
Wait, don't quit there! Remember, what I said at the beginning? Insurance is way confusing. And as of July 1 of this year, many insurance carriers have changed their mental health contractors too. What does that mean? Ok, I'm going to do my best to explain it, so I thought an example might make it the most transparent:
- Hi, I'm Candace
- My health insurance carrier is Unicare
- I find my perfect therapist, but Unicare isn't listed as accepted on her website
- I call the therapist and tell her what my insurance is
- She says as of July 1, Unicare has subcontracted mental health benefits to Beacon
- She's accepts Beacon health insurance
OK, so your dream therapist accepts your health insurance, now what? Next, you should call your health insurance just to verify your benefits, find out what your co-pay is, and then find out if you have to meet your deductible first or not. In Massachusetts, many plans do not require you to meet your deductible in order to start using your mental health benefits. Your therapist might verify your benefits too, but it always helps calling for your own piece of mind as well.
Remember, investing in your mental health is just as, if not more, important as investing in other areas of your health and life!