The number of residential treatment centers serving clients with eating disorders has risen from 22 to more than 75 in the last decade, according to The New York Times. In the past, eating disorders were rarely covered under insurance, by providers who regarded such conditions differently from other medical woes. The surge in care facilities has been attributed to a greater understanding of mental health disorders, greater coverage due to the Affordable Care Act, and investments from private firms. Some families, having depleted their savings for treatment, also pressured insurers through lawsuits. More care is a good thing, right?
Now there’s worry that the industry — whose advertisers work overtime to serve facilities that often charge over $1,000 a day for care — may be exploiting vulnerable patients and families. Doctors have called for greater transparency about the financial practices of these centers and the professionals who refer them, the Times said, noting that clinicians who could refer patients may receive “perks” like trips, meals, and gifts that studies have shown can affect prescription practices.
Read the full story at The New York Times.