Almost one in five American adults live with a mental illness, up to 51.5 million people in 2019, according to Mental Health America
. Depression is one of the leading causes of disability
, and people with severe mental health diagnoses die two decades prematurely.
The mental health crisis is even more dire for young adults in the United States. According to a survey
by Kaiser Family Foundation and CNN, 25% of 18-29-years-olds reported they could not work or engage in daily activities due to mental health concerns. The World Health Organization
reports that suicide is the fourth leading cause of death among 15-29-year-olds.
Headlines like these have grabbed the attention of Americans and of our elected officials. The Biden administration recently announced more than $300 million
in awards and grants for mental health funding, in particular for health professionals in schools and emergency departments. Additionally, 37 states have enacted mental health parity laws requiring insurance companies to cover treatment for mental health and substance abuse services in the same way they would cover treatment for physical health.
Inadequate Provider Directories
This additional legislation, funding, and attention focused on improving mental health in America cannot, alone, solve the problem. Health plans often struggle to provide members with adequate access to mental health services for several reasons, including a shortage of mental health professionals.
This shortage of providers contributes to the fact that behavioral health visits are five times more likely to be out-of-network
than a primary care visit. This means people seeking these services are often forced to go out of network to be seen by a provider – absorbing high out-of-pocket costs, traveling long distances or giving up all together due to the stress of the process or lack of resources to pay without insurance support.
Another issues that can deter people from seeing a mental health professional is lack of information about which providers are, in fact, in network. Without an up-to-date provider directory, people find it difficult to simply determine which providers they can access with their health plan.
However, insurance companies have stepped up to help address the problem and provide greater access to behavioral health services. According to a recent AHIP survey
, the number of in-network behavioral health providers increased by 48% in the last three years among commercial health plans. The same survey found that 78% of health plans increased reimbursement rates for behavioral health providers. And, 83% are recruiting diverse behavioral health providers.
While health plans have prioritized mental health and are consistently making improvements, the right partner and technology can help to improve access. Health plans need a partner to help navigate the provider network landscape and build strong behavioral health networks that ultimately provide access and services their members need to address mental health.
Provider Network Management Solution
When health plans rely on outdated legacy systems to manage their networks, they are often working with incomplete data sets resulting in inaccurate information and inadequate networks to serve certain populations.
V12 Network, built on Salesforce Health Cloud, is a provider network management solution that helps health plans build and manage their provider networks. Our automated system relieves the manual processes and helps health plans maintain and organize provider data in real-time to ensure the most accurate and up-to-date provider directory data and provider network management.
As networks grow more complex and government mandates call for the industry to improve their organizational efficiency, reduce operation costs, improve benefits coverage, and improve customer satisfaction benchmarks, switching to cloud provider network management is increasingly important to help build and maintain provider networks – providing better access to specialty providers and helping to solve the mental health crisis in America.
If you would like to learn more about V12 Network
, V12 PDE
, and our services, send us a message
! We would love to hear from you.