Using UnitedHealth Group for Eating Disorder Treatment
UnitedHealth Group carries one of the most diversified portfolio in the health care industry and a renowned leader the world over in making the health care system work for most people and in helping them attain improved health and well-being.
The company serves its clients through the use of two platforms:
- UnitedHealthcare, which offers health care benefits and coverage plans
- Optum, which offers services enabled by information and technology
While UnitedHealthcare serves vital geographic locations and markets with a wide array of health benefits plans for both benefit sponsors and consumers, Optum concentrates on delivering an improved health care system for everyone. To learn more about the lines of products offered by UnitedHealth Group and how to become a member, call our helpline at .
Will UnitedHealth Group Cover Eating Disorder Treatment?
Yes, UnitedHealth Group handles eating disorder treatment through its UnitedHealthcare platform. This platform offers its members access to United Behavioral Health (UBH), which manages substance abuse and mental health problems. Although some organizations do not consider eating disorders to be part of the broader category of mental health problems, the mental health charity association named Mind does.
United Behavioral Health offers a lot of experience in treating substance abuse and mental health disorders. It provides access to a huge network of health care providers with extensive experience and training in this field, such as the following:
- Psychiatric nurses
- Social workers
- Substance abuse counselors
To receive either inpatient or outpatient care, you need prior authorization from United Behavioral Health. If you need help connecting to this service, you can call our helpline at for information on whether your eating disorder treatment is covered by your UBH policy. We will give you access to a counselor who will link you to the nearest and most qualified medical provider who can address your eating disorder. This way, you get the help you need conveniently and quickly.
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How Much Will Eating Disorder Treatment Cost?
The cost of an eating disorder treatment can be very high since care is typically provided on a weekly basis by a team of medical experts, such as a physician, psychiatrist and nutritionist. According to an article in The New York Times, inpatient treatment for an eating disorder can cost $30,000 per month on average, and patients could stay within a facility to receive continuous care for three or more months. After the patient leaves the facility, follow-up care is often necessary.
Only UnitedHealth Group eating disorder coverage can determine the actual cost of your treatment after you have been evaluated by a mental health counselor. Nonetheless, as a member of this network, you are assured that your needs will be taken care of by your benefits plans. Plus, you are given access to not only the company’s improved health care system and experienced medical providers, but also its available discounts.
If you find these things interesting and you are not a member of this health network yet, don’t hesitate to call our helpline at so we can guide you through the membership process.
Inpatient Eating Disorder Treatment vs. Outpatient Services
Inpatient eating disorder treatment allows you to be under the care of medical providers 24/7 to monitor your progress and meet any problems as soon as they arise. To help you focus on your psychological and physical healing, the care you receive follows a treatment plan that is specifically designed for you. You will find everything you need in one central location.
Inpatient treatment is suitable for patients with advanced eating disorders for whom psychiatric and medical stabilization is imperative. When you enter the facility, you will undergo an evaluation that allows the staff to determine how to handle your case. After this, you will be assigned a case manager. This person will monitor your eating habits continuously and might suggest an intervention if a disordered pattern is observed. Treatment for your eating disorder may include psychotherapy, behavioral therapy, medication and nutritional counseling.
At some point in time, when the staff observes that you are ready to live independently, residential care follows. At this stage, you will live in a home-like environment, and you will be given the chance to practice the coping skills you learned in your therapy sessions. This part of your treatment still follows a specific format, and you will be supervised by the facility’s clinicians. This is to ensure your recovery is held in check and helps you rise above the triggers and challenges you might face along the way while on your journey toward recovery.
Outpatient eating disorder treatment is a lot less restrictive. This type of care might involve seeing a therapist, nutritionist or another medical provider two to three times a week. As such, it is suitable for patients with obligations at school or work they must continue to perform. This is also a good alternative if you don’t have enough insurance to pay for inpatient treatment and you are determined to stay in treatment. Outpatient care typically includes the following:
- Individualized therapy
- Personalized nutrition consultation
- Topic-focused groups
- Family support groups
Outpatient care is also required for some patients after they complete treatment within a facility. This could be the case if you have reached a certain level of recovery and are deemed ready to live independently. You will be permitted to return to your home and perform your responsibilities at school or at work. You will continue to receive support and care from your medical providers, and you will need to follow a structured meal program, continue practicing your coping skills and do your best to avoid relapse.
If you have made the decision between inpatient eating disorder treatment vs. outpatient services, now is the time to find the best treatment center for you. You can also let our friendly agents at do the job for you and guide you on how to find help in treating an eating disorder.
Dual Diagnosis Eating Disorder Therapy
Fifty percent of people with eating disorders are likely to also struggle with a substance abuse problem, according to the National Institutes of Health. Be aware that a dual diagnosis can be treated effectively in a residential facility that has the expertise to address substance abuse and an eating disorder simultaneously. It is known that substance abuse can aggravate the symptoms of an eating disorder, so you need to undertake detox first before your rehab can truly commence.
Inpatient care lets your medical providers see you around the clock to address any problems that may arise. Patients with eating problems need someone who can regulate the frequency and amount of their food intake and can manage the adverse effects related to withdrawal symptoms, so this type of care is preferred over its outpatient counterpart.
What follows the detox process is therapy. During this phase, you will work closely with a therapist who will provide group, talk and cognitive behavioral therapies. Cognitive behavioral therapy teaches you how to respond to anxiety and stress in ways that can help you avoid improper eating habits.
All eating disorder treatment programs are designed to help you reach a healthy weight and physical condition, which can ease the numerous side effects connected to your withdrawal symptoms, such as tiredness, dizziness or any other problem you might be struggling with.
If you need to know whether you or someone else has a dual diagnosis that requires immediate care, speak to one of our dedicated advisors at our helpline.
Insurance vs. Private Pay for Eating Disorder Options
Health insurance is serious business that could protect not only your health and well-being, but also your financial assets. When it comes time to treat a health care problem, being insured means lower out-of-pocket expenses. Since each type of insurance offers pitfalls and benefits, you need to find out which can help you the most.
Eating disorder treatment poses a serious challenge not only on the part of health care professionals, but also on the part of clients. Rehab can take a long time, which can significantly hurt your personal relationships as well as your finances. According to the Federal Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, hospital admissions for eating disorders increased by 18 percent from 1999 to 2006.
Another major challenge faced by patients dealing with eating disorders is that most insurers do not cover lengthy treatment for such conditions. Some of them will decline sufficient coverage because they believe there is no single method proven to treat an eating disorder. When compared to other types of psychiatric disorders, an eating disorder is more difficult to treat and diagnose.
If your eating disorder treatment requires a stay in a residential facility, your first resource for financial aid is your insurer. Before you contact your insurance company, however, you need to understand the full extent of your coverage policy and the potential problems that could hinder getting coverage for customized care. After you have done your best to obtain insurance-covered treatment, your last resource is private health treatment.
You can receive care for any type of health problem provided you can pay for it. This type of care could include treatment by a general practitioner or a medical specialist in a private hospital. Before you seek private health care though, there are some questions you need to ask yourself, such as the following:
- Can you pay for private care? The expense could be great.
- Can your financial bottom handle any unexpected costs, such as staying longer in a hospital because you haven’t recovered as fast as anticipated?
- Can a private hospital manage any complications that might arise during treatment, and can it provide intensive care facilities?
Be aware that private health practitioners or hospitals set their own rates. When you enroll in a program and stay in a facility for some time, you will be charged separately by your medical providers and by the facility. Treatment center charges would include such things as meals, accommodation, laundry, medications and examination fees. You can search online to get some insights into the amount you can expect to pay, ask your practitioner directly or call our hotline at for quick information.