Experts Say UnitedHealth’s Approach To Mental Health Is Like Insurer Paying For Diabetes-Related ER Trips But Not Long-Term Care
The nation's largest insurer is under fire for its decisions on what mental health services it covers. In other news, the company is trying to push into a crowded digital health marketplace.
UnitedHealth Clients Needed More Mental Health Care; United Said No
Max Tillitt's parents thought they were close to saving him. Their son had struggled for years with mental health problems and substance use, products of a violent hit during a junior year high school football practice that left him with a concussion and neck injury so bad he couldn't play anymore. It changed Max, creating behavioral problems that got him kicked out of school and mixed up with people who opened doors to marijuana, prescription painkillers and heroin. The young man who'd grown up looking out for others in need needed help. When Max was 21, the Tillitts thought they found an answer, a treatment center where their son finally seemed to be recovering. And they had insurance to cover it — a UnitedHealth plan they thought would pay for Max's treatment costs until doctors pronounced him well. UnitedHealth, however, had its own methods to decide how much was enough. (Roth, 4/22)
The Star Tribune:
UnitedHealth Grows Digital Health Business In Minneapolis
UnitedHealth Group is trying to grow in the crowded digital health market by rolling out new features for employers while expanding its downtown Minneapolis workforce to about 140 workers. For several years, employer health plans have hired its Rally Health division to provide a digital platform where workers can track their progress toward incentives in company-sponsored wellness programs. Now, UnitedHealth says employers can more easily access tools for finding doctors, comparing procedure costs, learning about insurance benefits and, in a few cases, scheduling appointments. (Snowbeck, 4/20)