A new measure introduced this week may make it simpler for state residents to receive mental health care.
A new Colorado mental health insurance bill introduced this week could make it easier for state residents to receive the care they need. The idea is to form a state ombudsperson’s office. The goal of the office is to assist Colorado residence in navigating the insurance system for mental health care.
Many people struggle to understand their rights and to whom they should direct their questions.
Individuals find the current Colorado mental health insurance system challenging to navigate. They find themselves facing dozens of phone calls, misunderstanding information about which providers are and are not in-network, and how to ensure questions are answered. They find it challenging regardless of whether they’re speaking with the provider or the insurance companies.
Mental Health Colorado CEO and President, Andrew Romanoff, explained that this is a vital problem. In fact, he acknowledged that it is reaching the point of a crisis within the state. It is estimated that over 500,000 people in the state are not receiving the mental health care they require.
The Colorado mental health insurance law states residents should have care within a week.
Romanoff pointed out that mental health care law in Colorado requires that patients be able to access care within seven days. Urgent cases should receive care within twenty four hours. That, however, does not appear to be the case.
What Mental Health Colorado has discovered is that people don’t know the rules or the law. Furthermore, they simply cannot find the care they need, regardless of whether or not they know what they are entitled to receive.
“When we tell folks those laws and those rules which are now in place in the state, they laugh us out of the room,” explained Romanoff. “‘Seven days would be great, but I’d settle for seven weeks, I’ve been waiting for seven months.’ Seeking care doesn’t do any good if you can’t find it.”
Mental Health Colorado supports the new bill, which aims to give the state an advocate to assist individuals in navigating this complex system. The ombudsperson’s office would function as a central point individuals and providers alike can reach when they require claims help.