Originally published November 19, 2017
Here is the conclusion:
First, do no harm
Many health insurance companies discriminate against psychotherapy. Congress has passed laws mandating mental health “parity” (equal coverage for medical and mental health conditions) but health insurers circumvent them. This has led to class action lawsuits against health insurance companies, but discrimination continues.
One way that health insurers circumvent parity laws is by shunting patients to the briefest and cheapest therapies — just the kind of therapies recommended by the APA’s treatment guidelines. Another way is by making therapy so impersonal and dehumanizing that patients drop out. Health insurers do not publicly say the treatment decisions are driven by economic self-interest. They say the treatments are scientifically proven — and point to treatment guidelines like those just issued by the APA.
It’s bad enough that most Americans don’t have adequate mental health coverage, without also being gaslighted and told that inadequate therapy is the best therapy.
The APA’s ethics code begins, “Psychologists strive to benefit those with whom they work and take care to do no harm.” APA has an honorable history of fighting for patients’ access to good care and against health insurance company abuses.
Blinded by RCT ideology, APA inadvertently handed a trump card to the worst apples in the health insurance industry.
The article is here.