Covid-19-Mental Health by the Numbers

A recent Kaiser Family Foundation poll reports that four in ten adults say that stress related to covid-19 is having a negative impact on their mental health. The Well Being Trust reports that the pandemic could cause 75,000 deaths of despair from drug, alcohol abuse and suicide.

More funding is needed. Of the $202 trillion appropriated in the CARES Act, only $425 million was dedicated specifically to mental health and substance abuse treatment. An additional impediment to seeking therapy is the fact that millions of Americans lost their insurance coverage after losing their jobs. Federal law allows laid off workers to keep their employer insurance plan for 18 months (COBRA) with all premiums paid by the former employee. The Covid-19 bill that recently passed in the House would grant subsidies to those individuals who are now paying their total premiums. The Senate as of this date has not begun debate on the proposed legislation.

Covid-19 is proving to be a breakout moment for many mental health practices with providers reporting an expanded patient base. At Kaiser Permanente over 90 percent of mental health visits are now happening virtually according to Don Mordecai, a psychiatrist who serves as the system’s national leader for mental health and wellness. Mordecai says the rapid rise in Teletherapy is something that would have taken years under normal circumstances.

Post Covid-19 many mental health providers are reporting that they will blend Telehealth with traditional in office counseling. The laws of supply and demand will help determine the balance.

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration estimates that by 2025, the U.S. will have a shortage of: 10,470 marriage and family therapists (40,250 needed; 29,780 available) … 26,930 mental health counselors (172,630 needed; 145,700 available) 48,540 social workers (157,760 needed; 109,220 available).

Associated Billing Center, LLC-Your Mental Health Billing Specialist-is well qualified to answer all of your questions regarding Teletherapy. Call us-We can help!

Source: Gary R’nel

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