[copperpress-advertserve-ad zone="3"]
ARCHIVED  December 1, 1995

Coverage lacking for some health remedies

Everybody knows that health care comes at a premium these days, but that’s especially true when you’re talking about nonconventional treatments.
Securing coverage for treatments such as chiropractic care, acupuncture and home health care might require some homework — and some creativity.
“Most companies these days cover chiropractic care,´ said John Bell of Front Range Insurance in Fort Collins. “But they will usually like to see some sort of closure. They will want to know if it’s medically necessary. Say if the insured was in a car accident, OK. But they will also like to be able to see an end to it.”
The maximum chiropractic benefit that Bell said he’s aware of is 50 visits. And, while chiropractic care is covered by most employee health-insurance plans these days, he said, it is generally not covered by health-maintenance organizations, or HMOs.
Looking at it from the companies’ point of view, Bell said, “It’s really subject to abuse. I mean, do you need it or don’t you need it. It’s not like a broken arm.”
Bell, whose company is a broker of employee-benefit plans dealing mostly with small and medium-sized companies, said so-called homeopathic care is less readily covered by health-insurance plans of any kind. Including acupuncture and vitamin and herbal remedies, homeopathic care is becoming more popular among the public generally, but not among insurance companies. And that’s too bad, too, he said.
“I don’t know any company that covers acupuncture,” he said. “It would be good if they did, because that’s a good kind of coverage.” But, like chiropractic, it’s less obvious to the casual observer, or the claims adjuster, that the insured is in need of the care.
As for home health care, another burgeoning and expensive trend that insurers are dealing with, most companies cover it when necessary, but only to a maximum of 120 days, Bell said. Mental-health care is covered to a maximum of 45 full days. And nursing-home coverage is available from most carriers, but the insured must buy it at a relatively young age so as to avoid restrictions on pre-existing conditions.

Everybody knows that health care comes at a premium these days, but that’s especially true when you’re talking about nonconventional treatments.
Securing coverage for treatments such as chiropractic care, acupuncture and home health care might require some homework — and some creativity.
“Most companies these days cover chiropractic care,´ said John Bell of Front Range Insurance in Fort Collins. “But they will usually like to see some sort of closure. They will want to know if it’s medically necessary. Say if the insured was in a car accident, OK. But they will also like to be able to see an…

[copperpress-advertserve-ad zone="3"]

Related Content