Severe accidents can have a traumatic impact on individuals. The shock of the crash, especially if a person suffered life-threatening injuries, may leave a victim with debilitating mental health issues.
Yet the cost of therapy and prescription medication often keeps victims of emotional shock from receiving the treatment they need. In 2019, more than 13 million Americans reported the need for mental health services but were unable to access them. Nearly half of these people also said they could not afford treatment.
Fortunately, a variety of programs are available to help mitigate treatment costs and provide low-cost, affordable therapy options regardless of whether you have health insurance.
If you are suffering from anxiety, depression, and/or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), we have put together a list of resources that offer financial assistance in paying for mental health treatment.
Sliding Scale Payment
Therapies such as cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) are often expensive, costing anywhere from $100 or more per hour. Some therapists and clinics charge fees based on income instead of a flat hourly rate. This sliding scale is beneficial for those with low incomes. Ask a potential therapist or mental health clinic if they offer a sliding scale or alternative payment options. Keep in mind that sliding-scale fees must be paid out-of-pocket.
Open Path Psychotherapy Collective maintains a national directory of therapists who are willing to offer lower rates for services based on income or need.
College and University Programs
Some colleges and universities offer affordable therapy for anxiety and other mental health issues. Contact the psychology, psychiatry, or behavioral health department for information about sessions with graduate students (who are supervised) who are looking to gain counseling experience. Keep in mind that sometimes these services are limited to campus students only.
Employee Assistance Programs
Check if your employer has an Employee Assistance Program (EAP). Some employers offer a free benefits plan that may include counseling services.
Medicaid is available to low-income U.S. citizens. Coverage includes mental health treatment costs, though eligibility varies by state. In Georgia, you can apply for Medicaid if you are pregnant, are a child or a teen, are 65 years or older, legally blind, have a disability, or need nursing home care.
Mental Health Apps
Covid spurred a massive demand for telehealth services. Today, you can find an abundance of free or low-cost mental health apps and telehealth therapists online, including BetterHelp, Talkspace, and Thriveworks.
While convenient, mental health apps should be used in combination with professional counseling, not as a replacement. And some therapists on these apps do not accept insurance, so ask about payment options up front.
Patient Assistant Programs for Prescription Drugs
Medication can help reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression, but it also tends to be expensive for those without health insurance. For uninsured patients, many pharmaceutical companies offer patient-assistance programs. These offer medications at a reduced cost. (Eligibility varies; contact companies directly to ask questions about their programs.)
Here are some pharmaceutical companies that offer patient assistance programs for medications:
Generic drugs are cheaper alternatives to name-brand prescriptions. Talk to your doctor about generic options for the medication they choose to treat you with. You should not adjust your dosage or frequency taken without first consulting your doctor.
Buying Medication Online
Another cost-effective way to get the medication you need is to buy it online. However, buyer beware: there are hundreds of scammers and fake pharmacies online. Only order medication through a licensed pharmacy with a licensed pharmacist. It is illegal for anyone to sell medication through a website without requiring a prescription first.
For help locating assistance programs for affordable medications and healthcare, NeedyMeds is a national non-profit information resource. Partnering with NeedyMeds is the ADAA (Anxiety and Depression Association of America). They’ve provided a list of popular healthcare cost-saving programs, including coupons, medical transportation, and government programs.
More Mental Health Resources
- SAMHSA (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration) - Input your location to find facilities that help with mental health, emergency mental health services, payment assistance, special programs, language assistance, and veterans affairs.
- Federally Funded Health Centers - For those without health insurance or with a strict budget, federally funded health centers offer mental health services. Patients pay what they can afford based on income.
- MentalHealth.gov - This site provides a list of organizations that offer mental health services and community support to youth and adults.
- The National Alliance on Mental Illness - NAMI offers free programs and virtual support groups for individuals and families living with PTSD.
Filing a Lawsuit for Emotional Damages
After a horrific crash or accident, recovery can seem like a monumental task. Mental health issues like anxiety, depression, or PTSD can make even the most basic tasks like grocery shopping, driving, or steady employment difficult, if not impossible. You want help, but finding the right therapist feels overwhelming, and you’re worried about the price tag.
A personal injury lawyer can help make sure the insurance companies involved cover the cost of your mental health treatment. They can also show how the accident impacted your daily life and caused emotional and psychological suffering.
Mental health issues can be just as debilitating as physical injuries. It can take several sessions or months of therapy before a person experiences an improvement in their quality of life.
Reach out to Gary Martin Hays & Associates to receive the support and resources you need to recover physically, financially, and emotionally after a devastating accident.
Contact us at (770) 934-8000 for a free consultation.