Dr. Stephen Strakowski Discusses Why Insurance Companies Should Pay for Substance Abuse and Addiction Treatment

Beginning in 2014 insurance companies must start paying for substance abuse and addiction counseling to those in need. Taxpayers and businesses will support this coverage, but according to Dr. Stephen Strakowski, the Stanley and Mickey Kaplan Professor and Chair of the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Neurosciences and Vice President of Research for UC Health, “we are already paying.” Dr. Strakowski explains that prison has become the primary treatment facility for those with mental health and addiction issues, which is much more expensive than outpatient treatment. Our society needs to improve the negative stigma associated with individuals who suffer from these problems, improve outpatient facilities and keep people out of hospitals and jails so they can continue to work, says Dr. Strakowski.

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