Do you think psychiatric care is inadequate in the US? - page 7

In this country a scene all too common is happening over and over in this country: a deranged man enters a public facility and starts shooting everyone. Its found out later in the news that he was... Read More

  1. by   wish_me_luck
    Yes, this is a conversation that needs to be had. Here's my experience...again, taking risks here with licensing...I personally have a mental illness. I didn't feel quite right for a long time. But, me being fairly responsible, I wanted help. I tried getting help--told my parents, went to counseling center at college, tried voluntary counseling (mom took me out of it), been in patient three times (first: couldn't find anything physically; kind of exploratory to see if problem was psych; second: voluntary; third: involuntary/TDO--suicide attempt) and subsequent court ordered out patient treatment. I do have a dx now, but care is not ideal (love my therapist, but that's it).

    I want people to know that many times people go in patient and they leave without a dx (health care providers have no idea what is wrong with them), many people go to psychiatry appts and they go exactly like mine did: went to appt and needed form filled out for HPMP. I wanted to know what my tx plan was (we still have that right, you know) and without any assessment on that visit, my pdoc told me that I didn't need medication. I added that I have a separate therapist, so he wasn't doing medication management and he wasn't doing psychotherapy. After this exchange took place, he took my form, told me I didn't need to come monthly, and got up and led me out of his office. End of appt. I paid for the appt and the claim was submitted to insurance. The claim--medication management. I was not on medication. I don't know if there is an office visit code for billing, but if not, there needs to be one. Medication management is defined as being on at least one psychotropic drug and the subsequent management (lab draws, assessment of side effects, and decrease/increase in dosage). I called the insurance about it and they didn't care. I don't care if the insurance wants to pay for something not received. Between the both of us (insurance and I) $100 was paid for that visit--5 minute visit which no medication management, no therapy, no assessment, no anything.

    I, however, am highly concerned about my fellow man with mental illness that is not getting the proper treatment for their condition. Then, we blame them in the end.

    Our complaints go unaddressed. We beg for help.

    I will admit, there are some good health care providers. So far, I really like my therapist. She has an open office (nothing between us) and she offered to do anything that needs to be done to help me. I think some mental health care professionals try to keep their patients in therapy for the rest of their life. Those are inept professionals as therapy is meant to work through issues and help with finding alternative solutions to the negative behavior. People should be done with therapy, if they have a good therapist, in 3-5 years or so. I left a therapist (that had a CSAC credential) that would have her desk in between us, very bare/uninviting office, just licenses/certs/degrees on the wall and when I told her what my dreams/future plans were, she told me that I shouldn't go for it/wouldn't make it type thing because of the stress level and I wouldn't be able to manage effectively. That's when I left because I don't want a negative therapist, I don't want someone who tells me I won't be able to handle the stress (that is the reason I was going to her--to help me find healthy coping mechanisms).

    My point is, I am sure there are patients that just are not going to function optimally/are disabled even with all the help in the world, but there's many that tried to get help and this is what we get for help. Instead of blaming patients and saying, "well we don't have enough mental health care providers"; maybe, we should say "we need to take a good long hard look at the quality of the ones that we have and the ones we are putting out."

    There's also a lot of fraud within the mental health system. I think part of it is because patients don't have clarity of mind and can easily be taken advantage of, but then, since mental health with some insurances are "sensitive dx", patients don't receive explanations of benefits. That means they do not receive something that tells what the provider charged them for. Therefore, they can't say "well this didn't happen". The way the system is set up, well meaning or not, allows for easy fraud to occur. It's not only a money issue, like I said before, you don't have these people who are needing service done getting the proper care.

    Sorry for being a parrot, but I want people to know what is going on with mental health care. Those are some of the problems. I don't have all of the answers, but if I can tell as many people (especially younger people) about me and my mental health issues and maybe be someone that they can go to for help or to talk or something, then it's better than being silent. Silence can be dangerous. It's that big elephant in the room that every knows about and sees and no one even acknowledges. Change doesn't occur from being silent.