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Healthcare Coverage: Easier Access For Patients With Mental Illness?

Update Date: Dec 20, 2016 08:30 AM EST

While a new legislation has been signed and filed to improve access to healthcare for people suffering from mental illness, a few studies reveal that only patients with moderate cases get to enjoy better coverage. 

It is not a secret that America is facing a great ordeal over mental illness as according to studies, 1 out of 5 Americansdevelop a mental disorder. Despite allotting millions of dollars to healthcare, a huge chunk of diagnosed patients do not receive the right care for their illness. 

Despite the government spending billions of dollars why does this problem continue to worsen?

A recent research by a doctoral student of Clinical Psychology at the University of Indianapolis Peter Lee Phalen shows that the Affordable Care Act (ACA) catered only to patients with Moderate Mental Illness. Patients with Serious Mental Illness were not able to take advantage of such bill.

"The health insurance system in the United States is expensive, complicated, and, frankly, demoralizing. It's difficult for anyone to navigate, and psychological distress makes it even harder," Phalen stated.

In 2017 however, President Barack Obama expressed his commitment to improve the system for patients suffering from mental Illness. A wider coverage for ACA was pursued to cater for those specifically with serious mental disease and significant improvement was seen during the Obama administration. 

However, the same is not the case for patients considered to have Serious Mental Illness. Although they have higher satisfaction rating with the coverage and more affordable insurance, there are still other factors that hinder significant developments for this group.

An extended healthcare system for kids was also developed in 2010 where young adults below 26 years old will remain covered under their parents insurance. With that recent development, there has been a significant improvement of people with mental disorders acquiring insurance and with evident decline for those who choose not to.

The government played a significant role in improving the healthcare system and many are expecting a decline in the nation's problem in the coming years. 

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