Despite the efforts of policymakers, access to in-network behavioral health care services has continued to lag relative to other types of health care. Many psychiatrists, for example, do not accept insurance, limiting access to their services to only those individuals who can afford to pay out of pocket. Several factors contribute to insurance networks’ paucity of behavioral health care providers, including low insurance reimbursement for behavioral health care services, inadequate regulation and enforcement, provider shortages, and a lack of access to telehealth services. To maximize the utility of existing regulatory structures, states should take an outcome-oriented enforcement approach that principally monitors appointment wait times to evaluate how well insurance networks meet their enrollees’ behavioral health needs. Additionally, policymakers should aim to strengthen internet infrastructure, broaden scopes of practice to encompass telehealth services, establish quantitative reimbursement minimums for some services, foster early interest in behavioral health careers, and adjust federal loan repayment programs to maximize recruitment to the behavioral health care workforce. Finally, lawmakers should create tax incentives to encourage behavioral health care providers to accept insurance.
404 Provider Not Found: Contributions and Solutions to Inadequate Provider Networks for Behavioral Health Care,
Ga. St. U. L. Rev.
Available at: https://readingroom.law.gsu.edu/gsulr/vol38/iss3/13