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Care, Responsibility and Recovery—Maine’s Opioid Epidemic

Sep 11, 2018
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Substance use disorders affect people of all ethnicities, ages, genders, geographic regions, and socioeconomic levels.  Like the rest of the country, Maine is experiencing a narcotic substance abuse crisis. In 2017, 418 people in Maine died of drug overdoses.

Substance use disorders affect people of all ethnicities, ages, genders, geographic regions, and socioeconomic levels.  Like the rest of the country, Maine is experiencing a narcotic substance abuse crisis. In 2017, 418 people in Maine died of drug overdoses.

As we begin to understand the societal costs of the opioid crisis, Community Health Options recognizes that we have a role in dealing with this crisis. We, like every health insurance company in the country, are challenged with the rising costs of medications, including lifesaving drug antidotes. Staying true to our core values and mission, we are working with our pharmacy providers and healthcare providers to monitor excess use of certain restricted medications and make lifesaving medications available to Members who need them.

Our intentions have been and always will be focused on the health of our Members. That’s why we partner with our Members through their healthcare journey to remove barriers, support transitions of care, and provide the tools and education for all Members to self-manage their health and wellness. Care Managers are available to answer general or complex medical questions, help Members navigate sometimes confusing processes, such as obtaining medical equipment for the home or ordering specialty medications, and can help if Members experience a critical event or diagnosis that requires extensive use of health services or resources. You can reach a Care Manager by contacting Member Services between 8 am and 5 pm, Monday through Friday, at 855-624-6463.

Prevention works; treatment is effective; people can and do recover.

SEE ALSO

File Under Urgent

As of July 1, Amwell Urgent Care is at your service 24/7 at $0 cost to you

Using the phone or Internet to connect with healthcare providers for telehealth services is one of the best innovations to rise in popularity during the pandemic. And now, our expanded access to telehealth services for urgent care comes right at a time when you need it most. Starting July 1, 2021, Community Health Options will be offering urgent care through our partnership with Amwell® digital services. This Boston-based telehealth provider is one of the fastest-growing secure online systems for connecting patients to physical and mental health specialists in the country, and for the rest of the year, the urgent care service is at $0 cost to you.

 

Good to Know

According to FierceHealthcare.com, Amwell’s telehealth visits more than doubled in the first quarter of 2021 when the company facilitated more than 1.6 million virtual care visits. This huge jump in usage coincides with the COVID-19 crisis, and many trendwatchers are wondering if telehealth’s growth will outlast the pandemic. We hope it does because more (and easier) access to healthcare providers is good for everyone, especially when you live in a primarily rural state like Maine.

 

Need to Know

As of July 1, 2021, telehealth can be your go-to when you have urgent care needs like cold or flu symptoms, an ear infection, or other acute injuries. If you’re pretty sure your kid has conjunctivitis, for example, and you just want a professional to confirm, pick up your smartphone instead of your keys and wallet. For the remainder of 2021, telehealth urgent care visits are at $0 cost to Health Options members, even for those in HSA compatible plans.

Amwell can connect you with non-emergency medical care from clinicians trained in internal medicine, family medicine, and pediatrics. It’s available at any time of the day or night, and you don’t have to sit in a waiting room reading old magazines for hours to get the answers you need. With telehealth, you can get refills or new prescriptions for birth control, depression, hypertension, diabetes, and more. Log into your Member portal here; go to the Health and Wellness section, and create your account today.

 

More to Know:

As telehealth continues to grow in popularity, you can expect to see more specialty care services and digital platforms come into play. Text messages, apps, and remote health monitoring are just a few ways telehealth will grow and create better access to care, more health information, and greater transparency about treatment options. For more information, read about interoperability here. Unless you really like waiting rooms, this is great news.