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Acupuncture Health Insurance

There are many ways to treat all kinds of ailments. Some are more common and accepted by the medical community while some are less traditional. Typically a medical insurance policy will not cover alternative options, such as acupuncture. However, for those who find these to be important alternatives, there are policies for you.

Alternative Health Policies

An increasing number of insurance companies and managed-care organizations are covering complementary and alternative medicine, fueled by consumer demand and a growing body of scientific evidence demonstrating the benefits and cost-effectiveness.

A recent survey of 18 major HMOs and insurance providers, including Aetna, Medicare, Prudential, and Kaiser Permanente, found that 14 of them covered at least 11 of 34 alternative therapies. Chiropractic, massage therapy and acupuncture are the three most-covered therapies followed by naturopathic medicine. Other therapies that are increasingly being included are herbal remedies, homeopathy, mind-body stress management, and meditation.

But the extent of coverage is still quite limited - people typically pay for services on a discounted fee-for-service basis or are allowed an unrealistically small number of sessions. The end result is that the treatments are wrongly judged as being ineffective when the real problem is that the limited coverage didn't allow the person to complete the recommended treatment plan.

Not matter what coverage you elect to purchase, be sure that you understand the specifics of your policy. You don't want to end up going for alternative treatment thinking you are covered only to find that when the bill comes due you are completely responsible for it. Be sure to ask your customer service rep any questions you might have in regards to your coverage. They should be able to answer all your questions and if they can't it's time to find a new provider.

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