Tag Archives: Alcohol Addiction

Addiction And Sleep Disorders: A Common Struggle

Addiction And Sleep Disorders: A Common Struggle

If you are recovering from an addiction to drugs and alcohol, you know that the road to recovery is full of challenges. You have to manage cravings, stave off relapses, handle withdrawal symptoms, and rebuild relationships, among many other tasks. However, one of the most common and most stressful issues that people in recovery face is sleep disorders. Not being able to sleep can heighten your chances of relapse and make recovery even more difficult – but there are strategies you can use to manage your sleep and get the rest you need.

What Happens To Your Sleep In Recovery?

According to the Journal of Addiction Medicine, people in recovery are 5 times more likely to suffer from insomnia than the general population. People in recovery are mainly at risk for these sleep disorders because of the complex psychological issues that occur when coming off of a substance, especially if you used this substance to help you fall asleep in the past. Sleep disorders can range during recovery – you may only deal with them during the withdrawal period, or you can keep experiencing them for weeks, months, or even years after recovery.

When it comes to addiction, you can experience long-lasting effects that impact your physical and mental health. Anxiety, depression, and other psychological conditions contribute to insomnia – and these issues are also common side effects during the recovery process. Unfortunately, sleep disorders can also feed into the risk of relapse, making recovery even more difficult.

First, you may have used the substance you are recovering from to help you sleep in the past. Now that you are clean from this substance, you cannot rely on it to fall asleep. In addition, you may be battling with very unpleasant side effects while in recovery – anxiety, depression, stress, and fear are some of the most common. As a result, it is more difficult for you to fall asleep at night.

Since it is more difficult to fall asleep, the sleep disorder exacerbates some of your recovery side effects. In particular, insomnia makes anxiety, depression, and stress even worse. You feel irritable, overtired, and like you cannot perform your daily functions – and your stress levels go through the roof.

You may think that old coping mechanisms, such as drug and alcohol use, are looking like a better decision. Since you are suffering from sleep deprivation, you could have more impulsive tendencies and want to end your discomfort as soon as possible. You could run the risk of relapsing at this point, or you could continue to suffer from sleep issues. However, a third option is available: using healthy methods to improve your sleep.

How Does Addiction Impact Your Sleep?

While sleep disorders in recovery are common, it is likely that you have experienced trouble sleeping before. Addiction itself can worsen your sleeping habits. Depending on the type of substance you used, you could impact your brain chemistry and sleep cycles. In addition, addiction withdrawal symptoms can also reduce your quality of sleep.

Because of the changes that drugs and alcohol make to your body, it can be very difficult to develop healthy sleeping habits while on these substances. Recovery and healthy sleep methods are the best options.

Addiction throws your natural body clock out of its rhythm – you often stay up very late in the night and wake up very late in the day. Drugs can also impact the time you spend in REM sleep, which reduces your feelings of restfulness in the morning. It takes longer to fall asleep when you are addicted to a substance, and you will reduce your overall sleep time because you often wake up during the night.

Tips For Improving Sleep While In Recovery From Addiction

While sleep disorders are often unavoidable in addiction recovery, it doesn’t mean that you cannot get a good night’s sleep. Follow these tips to enjoy a better night’s sleep and naturally improve your symptoms:

  • Exercise plays an important role in regulation your sleep cycles and increasing your relaxation during the day. In addition, exercise produces natural endorphins that can aid in your recovery journey. Performing 15 to 30 minutes of exercise about 3 to 4 hours before you go to bed can have a great impact on your ability to fall asleep.
  • Meditation can also aid in helping you fall asleep, especially if anxiety or intrusive thoughts play a role in your insomnia. With consistent practice, you can reduce your stress and help you focus on the present, both of which can help you fall asleep easier.
  • You can change your sleep environment to promote relaxation and aid you in falling asleep. If your mattress is uncomfortable, invest in a new one and supply it with supportive pillows, new blankets, and clean sheets. Keep your bedroom at a comfortable temperature, around 60 to 70 degrees Fahrenheit. Invest in a white noise machine to block out intrusive noises.
  • Using electronic devices right before bed can make it harder to fall asleep, since the blue light can block the release of your sleep hormones. Enable night mode to lower your exposure to this light before bed or avoid screens completely in the hours before you fall asleep.
  • A poor diet can also make it more difficult to get some rest, in addition to increasing stress and discomfort. Avoid foods that are high in sugar, fat, spice, and caffeine after midday. Incorporate foods that promote sleep, such as legumes, leafy green vegetables, dairy products, and meats, into your diet. Avoid eating large, heavy meals late at night.
  • Establishing a regular bedtime routine can also help you fall asleep easier. Having a regular schedule allows you to develop a ritual that can help you combat insomnia and promote relaxation. Avoid doing anything other than sleeping and relaxing in your bed. Go to bed and wake up around the same times every day, including weekends. Perform relaxation activities before bed, such as meditating, doing some light yoga, taking a warm bath, or reading a book.

If you are still struggling from a sleep disorder during recovery, visit a medical professional as soon as possible. If you find yourself struggling with a sleep disorder due to addiction, seek professional treatment from a drug and alcohol rehabilitation center. For more information on pursuing your recovery journey, visit Echo Recovery today to gain valuable resources from others like you.

The Concerning Reason an International Alcohol Study at Johns Hopkins University Was Called Off

The Concerning Reason an International Alcohol Study at Johns Hopkins University Was Called Off

A high-profile international alcohol study with a local connection has been grounded.

Recently, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) cut off funding of a multimillion-dollar study of the effects of one drink of alcohol a day.

The primary research had been taking place in the Johns Hopkins ProHealth Clinical Research Center in Baltimore. Researchers from Johns Hopkins Medicine were involved, as were 15 other institutions from around the world, such as Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center and the University of Copenhagen.

Why Was the International Study Halted?

How Does Alcohol Affect Your Health InfographicNIH stopped funding the study, formally known as The Moderate Alcohol and Cardiovascular Health Trial (aka MACH15), because the lead researcher and a few agency employees appeared to be “too cozy with the industry.” And by “industry,” we mean alcohol industry.

Concerns were initially raised back in March when The New York Times investigated the alcohol industry’s influence over this Johns Hopkins-based study.

The Times’ article suggested that some NIH employees actively courted the alcohol industry’s involvement in the study, and that these employees were already insinuating that the results of the trial would endorse moderate drinking as healthy.

The trial’s lead researcher, Dr. Kenneth Mukamal of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston, retorted that the framing of the study had “no input or direction whatsoever from private sponsors, who have had no contact regarding MACH15 with any study staff member since the trial began.”

Other Reasons the Study Lost Its Funding

There were a couple of other reasons cited by NIH in its decision to halt the funding of MACH15:

  • NIH found that employees of its National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism were in such constant communication with Dr. Mukamal that it undermined the scientific integrity of the trial.
  • An NIH investigation also found that its employees and MACH15 researchers appeared to frame the study in a way that its findings would support moderate alcohol consumption, which was what The New York Times’ report suggested, as well.

How Was the Trial Being Funded?

Yes, funding for the trial was coming from the National Institutes of Health, but it’s more complicated than that. More specifically it was coming from a private foundation that raises money for NIH. And, this private foundation was taking donations from Anheuser-Busch InBev, Heineken and other alcohol corporations.

NIH investigated this foundation recently and found no signs of foul play in how it raised money for the MACH15 trial.

What Exactly Were They Studying?

The researchers of MACH15 were testing to see if one alcoholic beverage per day decreases the risk of heart diseases and diabetes. It was supposed to be a 10-year trial, and the study had garnered 105 participants, many of whom were approached in Baltimore by Johns Hopkins researchers.

The trial began in mid-2017, and had eaten up $4 million of its $100 million budget prior to NIH’s decision to call it off. The Baltimore Sun reported that it will still take several months for the researchers to wind down and close out the trial.

NIH has said it will take action against the employees who violated procedures, but the agency did not specify the extent of such discipline.

So What Conclusion Can We Draw?

Although it’s not entirely conclusive that NIH and MACH15 researchers colluded with the alcohol industry in this study – and the results will never come out, anyway – it still calls into question the purity of similar studies – in years past and yet to be conducted.

The Dangers and Risks of Drinking Alcohol

Every year or so, it seems like a new study comes out that has a conclusion such as, “One drink a day is good for you,” or, “One drink per day will shorten your life span.” For example, many U.S. and U.K. news outlets reported on a Finnish study in 2016  and proclaimed that a glass or two of wine with dinner boosts mental and physical health.

However, those publishers overlooked that these results had much to do with lifestyle factors: Wine drinkers tend to make better nutritional choices, and many come from well-off backgrounds, meaning they have access to healthier foods.

What happened with the MACH15 trial does make you wonder if there are outside forces influencing the outcome of alcohol and drug studies.

The Independent reported on a Mediterranean Neurological Institute, Pozzilli review in 2016 and concluded, “A Pint of Beer a Day Could Protect You from Heart Attacks.” However, The Independent and other news outlets overlooked that an Italian beer trade association funded the study.

Latest Parallel to the MACH15 Trial

While we will never know the results of the MACH15 trial, there was a study that wrapped up earlier this year that has several similarities. An international team of researchers analyzed data on nearly 600,000 people in 19 countries, with self-reported data reaching as far back as 1964.

The Lancet medical journal published the study, and new agencies had slightly different takes and degrees of alarm based on the findings. Here are a few of the headlines:

From NBC News: “More than 5 Drinks a Week Could Shorten Lives by Years”
From CNN: “Even One Drink a Day Could Be Shortening Your Life Expectancy”
From CBS News: “For Longevity, Have No More than One Drink a Day”

Our Take

No matter what studies have come out or will come out, we don’t need to wait for them to tell us that alcohol is risky and can harm one’s health if abused. We’ve seen it, and we’ve helped many people find their way in beating this addiction.

And while a drink here or there isn’t the end of the world for most people, we do know that if you go out of your way to get in at least one or two drinks each day, then that can develop into an addiction before long.

So if you’ve found yourself struggling to go a day without drinking or you have a family member who’s battling alcoholism, learn what the full process of recovery requires and how we can help you find appropriate treatment.

Explore the Addiction Continuum of Care

Drug Rehab Fraud and Its Effect on Insurers and Access to Addiction Treatment

Drug Rehab Fraud and Its Effect on Insurers and Access to Addiction Treatment

Rick and Drew want to help people get better. As licensed therapists and shareholders in a rehab center, these dedicated addiction and mental health professionals lost everything five years ago due to insurance fraud. Meaining, through no fault of their own, Rick and Drew paid the price for other rehab centers’ unethical practices.

Although the names have been changed, this sad but true story is becoming more and more the norm today.

The Rise of Insurance Fraud Cartels

Rick says sketchy facilities were billing patients’ health insurance $1,200 for a urinalysis, which should have been billed for about $10. Using a typical schedule of three urinalyses a week per patient, some addiction treatment centers were gouging the insurance companies big time.

Holding themselves to a higher moral standard, Drew and Rick refused to over-bill for their services to survive.

Burdened by outrageous bills from other rehabs, insurance companies became slow to pay and eventually stopped paying altogether. Drew spent many hours trying to collect insurance debts of more than $1 million.

The lack of payments drove Rick and Drew out of business, and both therapists lost their life savings that was invested in their dream of helping people.

It brings new meaning to the phrase “drug cartels.”

Insurance Companies Sued

Insurance companies like Health Net, which serves Arizona and California, are suddenly not paying claims for drug addiction treatment. Health Net was sued by nine drug and alcohol treatment centers last year for delayed or incomplete payments for policyholders’ addiction treatment.

The nine treatment centers claim Health Net improperly withheld funds from virtually all drug addiction rehab facilities in Arizona and California.

Similarly, a group of California treatment facilities filed a lawsuit against Health Net for halted payments for medically necessary services.

The New Drug Cartels

This trend of health insurers absconding reflects poorly on the new drug cartels. Insurers control the ebb and flow of industry money, and for each company that gets away with the money, there’s another company that follows suit.

In the same way, sketchy rehab centers act like drug treatment cartels by inflating their claims, gouging insurance companies and learning underhanded tactics from other rehabs.

The Fraud Fallout

Like Rick and Drew’s story, some rehabs have been squeezed financially to the point they could no longer operate, closing their doors permanently. Health insurers blame drug rehabs for filing claims with grossly inflated prices in an attempt to regain their losses impacted by fraud in the industry.

Laws Governing Mental Health Care

Although the rehab industry is not regulated by state or federal government, there are laws requiring mental health care benefits for all insured patients.

Here are a couple of the laws governing mental health care in the U.S:

  • Under federal law, insurance companies are required to provide equitable coverage for substance abuse and addiction treatment.
  • Equitable coverage is relegated under the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Act.
  • The Affordable Care Act reiterates the mandate for essential health benefits, including behavioral health services.
  • Insurers are forbidden from denying these benefits due to a preexisting condition.

A few unscrupulous substance abuse programs misapplied these laws and billed exorbitantly, believing the insurers would be required to pay for services no matter what. Additionally, in some circumstances, the services were not medically necessary or not performed at all.

Patient Brokering

Another way disreputable addiction treatment centers have skirted the laws and taken advantage of insurers is by patient brokering. Patient brokering involves hiring sales agents to convince prospective clients into traveling to a certain rehab facility. The sales agents get a kickback for each client referred.

Potential clients are offered everything from free airfare to perks and financial help to go to the advertising rehab. The recruiters use deceptive advertising and urgency tactics, and when the client’s insurance benefits run out, he or she is immediately discharged.

Early discharge is certainly not in the best interest of the client, as some are released too early and immediately relapse. Death by accidental overdose happens fairly often during a relapse.

Of note, when someone has a relapse, they qualify for readmittance into rehab, and the insurance benefits reset for a new round of therapy.

Patient brokering is illegal in some states, like Florida. Florida rehab facilities are forbidden to fly out-of-state clients in for treatment. They are not allowed to waive fees, copays or give any other monetary compensation for coming to their rehab.

Some rehab facilities have gone so far as to bring out-of-state patients into treatment and help them apply for health insurance from an insurer that pays out high benefits. There are even cases of addiction centers applying for insurance for a patient who is unaware the center is doing so.

Despite these laws, drug rehab fraud is still occurring, and health insurance companies are spending additional time and resources sifting through legitimate and illegitimate claims.

How Insurance Fraud Is Affecting Availability of Treatment for Americans

The availability of addiction treatment for patients is limited. The problems:

  • Insurance fraud
  • The out-of-network designations with higher patient responsibility
  • Increasing number of rehab centers falling into the out-of-network providers’ category
  • The impact of the opioid crisis demanding more services than are available in some areas

These factors make it difficult for some to find a rehab center that accepts their insurance and that the patient can afford to go to.

Many who are insured are discovering that most rehab centers are becoming out-of-network providers under their plans. Because more costly rehabs are being excluded from the in-network list, patients are responsible to bear the lion’s share of the costs.

In an unregulated industry, the little man gets the brunt of the bill. For instance, many rehab facilities are refusing to admit patients with certain types of health insurance — like Health Net. Non-payment became an insurmountable hindrance to the aforementioned California and Arizona facilities, and they had to start refusing care to patients with Health Net insurance.

In this way, Americans are losing the freedom to go to the rehab of their choice.

Between soaring premiums, deductibles, copays and the out-of-network factor, patients are paying the price. Patients are not only paying the financial price, but also receiving a lower quality of mental health care.

Soaring Costs for Patients

The cost of substance abuse services covered under PPO plans surpasses all other types of medical treatment. Cancer, childbirth and even surgeries are less expensive than lengthy rehab stays.

Even when insurance policies require prior authorization of treatment — and when that treatment gets approved — the big business of health insurance stiffs the small business rehabs. It has been documented that insurance companies are doing audits of the claims, invoices and services of drug and alcohol abuse programs. But even when the audits come back clean, insurers often find a reason not to pay.

Patients receive huge bills after coming home from rehab. Quite a few people who’ve struggled with addiction have been ravaged by their disease and come to treatment broke and homeless. When the emotional, mental and physical work concludes and individuals regain their health, the financial aspect of life may take longer to recoup.

In other words, people who trusted their insurance to pay as agreed are left with a big bill they can’t pay.

In the end, the drug addiction and sober living homes suffer. Their patients can’t pay and their insurance won’t. The smaller facilities, like Rick and Drew’s, are forced out of business. Health insurance companies are bought and sold for billions of dollars; it is a highly profitable industry.

Having difficulty finding an in-network provider can be a roadblock for families seeking help for their loved one. Addiction devastates one’s whole life and whole being, and those dealing with addiction need the proper help to recover.

Insurance Premium Hikes for Policyholders

Health Net reports that due to widespread fraud at drug rehab centers in California and Arizona, they have lost tens of millions of dollars and have had to pass the costs on to individuals in the way of higher premiums.

If it hasn’t already affected your insurance premium, it may be coming. Attempting to balance the deficit caused by fraud, insurers are passing on the expense to employers and policyholders. Even if you get your health insurance through your job, your company will likely only take on a portion of the increase in cost and make you responsible for the rest.

It’s a dirty needle business.

Insurance companies have to be cautious that claims are not fraudulent to protect themselves. They certainly can’t turn a blind eye to blatant misuse or providers taking advantage of the system. But also, insurers must keep their agreements to pay and not penalize all rehab facilities and patients because of a few underhanded for-profit facilities.

Opioid Epidemic Killing People and Prices

At a time when, according to the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 115 people die every day from overdosing on opioids, we need addiction treatment centers more than ever. The CDC also reports opioid-related deaths are still continuing to rise. In a country divided on how to solve the opioid issue, one thing we all agree on is something needs to change. We need to help our people.

With the swelling opioid crisis, a continually growing number of beds and treatment centers are needed to meet the demand. The rehabilitation industry booms because the opioid epidemic booms. Along with more rehab centers springing up and sober living communities growing, the demand cannot be met fast enough.

However, the effects of drug rehab fraud on insurers and the trickle-down effect on patients trying to gain access to addiction treatment are concerning obstacles. Proper health care needs to be a priority, and the rising number of opioid-addicted citizens means an increasing burden on insurance companies to pay out mounting costs from more rehab patients.

Like Rick and Drew discovered, insurance is foremost a for-profit business and their bottom line is their top priority.

While it’s true that the substance abuse treatment field is littered with bad apples, that’s only half the story. The other half is people like Drew and Rick who lost everything because insurers failed to keep their agreements.

The Impact of Halted Payments

It’s now five years after Drew and Rick lost their life’s work. They only recently received the records and files their attorney requested for review. In viewing the documents, they were shocked to find so many late and unpaid claims, along with trumped-up excuses from health insurance companies.

A few months after their loss, Rick and Drew pulled themselves out of the situational depression engulfing them and they found work as therapists in a bigger rehab center. They spearheaded a new program at the center, and as a team still working together, they run the obsessive-compulsive process addiction department.

They don’t make the money they used to, but their hearts are full once again, doing the work they love and helping people recover. Rick is 81 years old and Drew is 79.

Rick, Drew and many other addiction treatment providers are still waiting for their money from insurance companies.

ECHO Recovery Is Helping

Because the opioid epidemic and rehab fraud are making it more difficult for some people to receive addiction treatment, ECHO Recovery is working harder than ever to help as many Americans as possible find affordable addiction treatment, housing, and help.

If you can empathize with the plight of those struggling with the debilitating disease of addition, we encourage you to be a champion of those who need it the most and join our grassroots movement.

Success is found in the small, compassionate, everyday acts of goodness. Donating to the cause alleviates the suffering of those addicted to drugs and alcohol, one dollar at a time.  If you’re considering donating, click below to see where your money would go.

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What Will Insurance Cover for Addiction Treatment?

What Will Insurance Cover for Addiction Treatment?

Anyone struggling with an addiction is likely to have countless questions about detox, rehab – and how to pay for both. Thanks to the Federal Parity Law enacted in 2008, large employers with more than 50 employees who purchase group healthcare plans must secure coverage for employee mental health and drug and alcohol rehabilitation. Additionally, a plan that offers such coverage cannot restrict it any more than coverage for other medical issues like surgeries and emergency care. “Parity” implies that coverage for mental health services and substance abuse treatment is equal to more “traditional” medical coverage.

While the Federal Parity Law ensures large employer coverage for mental health and substance abuse treatment, smaller employers with fewer than 50 employees do not need to meet this requirement. However, many states have enacted their own parity laws concerning mental health and substance abuse coverage for employee insurance plans. Roughly 96% of American employers report that their insurance coverage applies to mental health and substance abuse. When an insurance plan falls under the jurisdiction of both federal and state-level parity laws, whichever one provides the greater benefits applies.

Depending on your health insurance coverage, your plan may cover all or part of your substance abuse rehabilitation. However, it’s vital to carefully review your policy to look for disclaimers or network restrictions. You may need to attend a rehabilitation center from a specified list provided by your insurance carrier or within a certain radius of your primary residence. Some insurance plans will require a referral before coverage applies, and some plans may not cover your type of addiction.

What Does Insurance Cover For Drug Rehab?

If you want to get the most out of your existing insurance coverage, you should first look at the differences in benefit allowance for in-network versus out-of-network care. For example, your plan may cover 100% of the cost of visiting an in-network provider, but only cover 60% of the cost of an out-of-network provider.

You should also investigate your deductible obligation to find out how much you’ll have to spend out of pocket before your insurance coverage takes over. Your plan may also include an out-of-pocket limit. Once you reach this limit, all of your remaining medical expenses for the year receive 100% coverage. Your insurer will also want proof of good faith that you are taking rehab seriously, so you should expect some type of monitoring during your recovery.

There’s no solid answer to what your insurance will cover for drug rehab. Coverage will vary based on insurance carrier, employer, location, state parity laws, and individual details. Some of the largest medical insurers in the country offer drug rehab coverage under certain conditions.

Aetna Drug And Alcohol Insurance Coverage

Aetna offers a variety of drug rehab coverage, and plan details vary by plan option as well as by state. Aetna plans offer coverage for inpatient and outpatient rehab services as well as behavioral health services, so it’s up to you to find a plan that works for you. Some Aetna plans will cover a portion of inpatient substance abuse treatment, outpatient rehabilitation services, and behavioral health counseling. The covered portion of the cost can sometimes exceed $9,000 per individual per the calendar year, depending on the plan. As a baseline, most Aetna plans will offer up to $1,500 toward detox and withdrawal treatment and another $2,500 per year for additional services.

Anthem Drug And Alcohol Insurance Coverage

Anthem is part of the Blue Cross Blue Shield insurance network and upholds the belief that behavioral health is integral to overall health. Anthem plans can include 100% coverage or partial coverage for substance abuse treatment, psychological counseling, and behavioral health services. Policyholders will also have the option of purchasing partial coverage for lower premiums or participating in a health savings account. The exact details of Anthem’s coverage vary from plan to plan.

Assurant Drug and Alcohol Insurance Coverage

Assurant provides a wide variety of mental health and substance abuse coverage options in their insurance plans. Most Assurant plans will cover most inpatient and outpatient treatment services, typically requiring a $30 copay per calendar day. Some plans limit the number of service days you can have in one year while others have no limits. This is especially valuable for intensive treatment programs like inpatient substance abuse rehabilitation.

Blue Cross Blue Shield Drug And Alcohol Insurance Coverage

Blue Cross Blue Shield is one of the largest medical insurance carriers in the country, and the details of a Blue Cross Blue Shield insurance plan will vary on an individual basis. Coverage options vary between states, so it’s vital for policyholders to understand the coverage they have in their state.

While there are limits to certain types of coverage, most Blue Cross Blue Shield plans include coverage for family counseling, cognitive behavioral therapy, medication coverage, and psychotherapy. A distinct benefit to Blue Cross Blue Shield coverage is that there are no dollar limits you will need to meet throughout the year that affects your ability to receive treatment.

Cigna Drug And Alcohol Insurance Coverage

Cigna coverage can include outpatient rehabilitation services, intensive inpatient rehabilitation, and some residential treatments. Like all other insurance carriers, it’s important for policyholders to carefully review the terms of their coverage to confirm in-network and out-of-network rates, disclaimers, and restrictions for coverage. Cigna also has a unique Alcohol Specialty Care Management Team including licensed professionals with training in alcohol abuse disorders. This team helps connect policyholders to providers in their area.

Coventry Health Care Drug and Alcohol Insurance Coverage

Coventry is part of the Aetna insurance network and offers access to the First Health Network, one of the largest and most reputable Preferred Provider Organizations in the country. Coventry also offers Medicare Advantage plans that may cover both inpatient and outpatient substance abuse treatment services.

Harvard Pilgrim Health Drug And Alcohol Insurance Coverage

Harvard Pilgrim offers coverage through United Behavioral Health, a network of specialists and professionals including medical doctors, detox experts, psychologists, psychiatrists, and holistic therapy experts. Harvard Pilgrim also offers family counseling, marriage counseling, and even access to social workers and individual counselors.

Health Alliance Plan (HAP) Drug And Alcohol Insurance Coverage

Based in Michigan, the HAP is part of the Henry Ford Health System and assigns a unique service coordinator to every policyholder. HAP also covers emergency services and urgent care anywhere, even outside of Michigan, and detox and rehab programs throughout Michigan fall under HAP coverage as well.

Humana Drug And Alcohol Insurance Coverage

Humana is one of the largest insurance carriers in the country and offers both individual and group healthcare plans. Every plan is different, and there are several options for coverage for inpatient services, intensive outpatient services, and behavioral health counseling.

Medical Mutual Drug And Alcohol Insurance Coverage

Medical Mutual offers coverage for substance abuse, dependency, individualized therapies, and both inpatient and outpatient addiction care. This insurance carrier also sets itself apart by guaranteeing at least partial coverage for all the typical expenses associated with a rehabilitation program. A Medical Mutual plan may also cover alternative, faith-based, or holistic therapies.

Oxford Health Plans Drug And Alcohol Insurance Coverage

Oxford Health Plans operate under the umbrella of United Healthcare in New Jersey, New York, and Connecticut, but coverage often extends outside of these states as well. As a branch of United Healthcare, Oxford offers a wide variety of individual plan options for policyholders in many states, and plans can cover inpatient, outpatient, and mental health services.

United Healthcare Drug And Alcohol Insurance Coverage

United Healthcare offers nationwide coverage, so you won’t have to worry about traveling out of state for substance abuse treatment. United offers several plans that cover a wide range of treatment options for substance abuse and rehabilitation programs in every state. Coverage can extend from detox through inpatient and outpatient intensive care and behavioral health counseling.

Learn More At The Echo Foundation

The Echo Foundation is committed to providing the public with the latest news concerning addiction, substance abuse, advocacy, and treatment in the United States. Visit us to learn more about our work and the latest treatments available in addiction recovery.

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Welcome to the ECHO Recovery Blog

In 2014 veteran addiction treatment executive Jim Haggerty spearheaded the effort to form the nonprofit ECHO Recovery, and after much time and effort, we are thrilled to present this brand new website to the public.

With the advent of this blog as part of the new site, our goal is to cover such topics as:

  • Rehab Industry Advancements
  • Best Treatment Practices
  • Breakdown of the Different Levels of Care for Addiction
  • Recovery and Relapse-Prevention Tips and Strategies
  • Sober Living News and Advocacy
  • Drug Use Stats and News (especially regarding the opioid epidemic)

What Does ECHO Mean?

The “ECHO” in ECHO Foundation stands for East Coast Housing Opportunities. In short, our goal is to help people going through rehab find safe and reliable sober homes while actively enrolled in a treatment program – especially outpatient and aftercare. Online donations play a major role in allowing us to help these individuals locate and finance their sober living accommodations.

ECHO Recovery is getting our start by offering our services in The Old Line State of Maryland. We have plans to quickly expand our sober living offerings throughout the East Coast (hence our name), especially to New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Massachusetts and New York – states hard hit by the opioid epidemic.

According to Haggerty, there are not enough long-term sober living options available on the East Coast for individuals who have graduated residential addiction rehab programs. So, ECHO Recovery is prepared to help solve that problem.

Ultimately, we aim to expand services nationwide to help as many people as possible become and stay sober.

Why the Focus on Outpatient Addiction Treatment?

Outpatient addiction treatment is the critical step between graduating a residential program and returning to so-called “normal life.” Studies show that the longer someone is in treatment for addiction, the better his or her chance for long-term recovery. Since many residential programs are only 30 days, most aren’t getting the breadth of care they truly need to be able to go forward in life substance-free.

Partial hospitalization and outpatient programs help fill the void, but many clients are in need of a stable place to stay as they continue receiving outpatient services. Sober homes encourage accountability in each client’s sobriety and remove the temptation of substance use. They also provide a solid base for the client to return to after attending outpatient sessions. Clients are even encouraged to work part-time or continue their formal education.

If you need a refresher on the services commonly offered in outpatient rehab services, they include (but are not limited to):

  • Individual Therapy
  • Group Therapy
  • Family Therapy
  • Faith-Based Support Groups (such as 12-Step Meetings)
  • Nutrition Counseling
  • Relapse Prevention Education
  • Life Skills Counseling
  • Alumni Events
  • Holistic Therapies (such as Yoga, Massage, etc.)

Offering Much More than Sober Housing

Providing sober living opportunities is just a portion of what we do at ECHO Recovery. Our overall mission is three-pronged:

  • Advocacy – We want to advocate on local and national levels for expanded and easier access to addiction treatment services for those who need the help.
  • Education – We want to educate individuals and the public on what addiction is and how treatment can make the difference. This will have the ancillary benefit of helping end the stigma surrounding addiction.
  • Support – We pledge our unwavering support to individuals and families who need to cease the destructive cycle of drug and alcohol abuse. This is where sober housing comes into play.

Stay Tuned for Much More

The best is yet to come from ECHO Recovery. We invite you to follow us on our journey as our site continues to grow as we expand our reach throughout the East Coast and on to the rest of the country. There’s an opioid epidemic that needs to come to an end, as does the stigma surround drug and alcohol addiction. There’s much work to be done.

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