Higher Cost Sharing For Mental Health Services Could Increase Downstream Costs

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Bastian Ravesteijn PhD Department of Health Care Policy Harvard Medical School

Dr. Ravesteijn

Bastian Ravesteijn PhD
Department of Health Care Policy
Harvard Medical School 

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: We find that higher out-of-pocket costs for mental health care could have the unintended consequence of increasing the use of acute and involuntary mental health care among those suffering from the most debilitating disorders.

MedicalResearch.com: What should clinicians and patients take away from your report?

Response: Our results do not rule out that higher out-of-pocket costs incentivized certain individuals to reduce their use of low-value care, and certainly it reduced overall treatment costs. However, they do suggest that higher cost sharing for seriously ill and low-income patients could discourage treatment of vulnerable populations and create substantial downstream costs.

MedicalResearch.com: What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?

Response: In future research, we will look at consequences of patient cost sharing outside of mental health care in terms of income, social security, and crime.

MedicalResearch.com: Thank you for your contribution to the MedicalResearch.com community.



Ravesteijn B, Schachar EB, Beekman ATF, Janssen RTJM, Jeurissen PPT. Association of Cost Sharing With Mental Health Care Use, Involuntary Commitment, and Acute Care. JAMA Psychiatry. Published online July 19, 2017. doi:10.1001/jamapsychiatry.2017.1847

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Last Updated on July 20, 2017 by Marie Benz MD FAAD