The Addiction-Treatment Industry Is in an Ethics Crisis

Dr. Robin Barnett, EdD, LCSW, LCADC, CSAT

Nearly everyone in America knows that our country is living through an opioid epidemic that is addicting and killing millions of our people. In addition to looking at why that is and how we can curb its growth, the more immediate need is to treat those affected by addictions of all kinds.

And more than a few people have stepped up to the plate to “help”.

The problem is, many of those who have moved into the addiction treatment industry have done so without any training or, it would appear, scruples. In a purely opportunistic move, they are taking advantage of both the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act (which ensures equal funding for mental health treatment—ostensibly a very good thing) and the seemingly endless line of people who need help.

Let’s break that down into the specifics starting with the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act. The intention behind it is to ensure that those who need mental health care (under which addictions treatment falls) can get it, regardless of their income. Given the millions of Americans who suffer from mental health disorders, this is a much-needed provision.

However, there is little regulation around providers for substance abuse treatment, so the opportunity to defraud the system is terribly easy. One common fraud is the pee scam trend seen among unethical caregivers who bill patients’ insurance for urine tests they don’t actually give. They can bill as much as they like and get paid over and over, sometimes without even meeting with the patient in person.

An even more insidious trend among the morally bankrupt who prey on the thousands of people suffering from drug and alcohol addiction is patient brokering. This has, at times, been compared to human trafficking, and in some cases, this is an accurate description.

In its less sinister form, patient brokering is when a person receives a kickback—referral fees or other compensation—for sending a patient to a specific treatment center with whom they have an agreement. This practice has become so prevalent that sometimes patients themselves are offered cash or, in some cases, even drugs to enter a certain facility.

In its worst form, patients with good insurance or wealthy families who live far from the treatment center (and are, therefore, unable to monitor their loved one’s treatment) are trafficked from sober living home to sober living home, each person facilitating the transfer receiving compensation. Horror stories about patient mistreatment in the most disreputable “treatment” centers include lack of basic personal hygiene supplies, food, and a proper room to live in. Sadly, it is not uncommon for patients to continue to use drugs in these settings—often supplied by the people who run the facilities—and die. Yet prior to their deaths, their families had no concept of where their loved one really was and how they were treated.

The National Association of Addiction Treatment Providers has responded to this rampant unethical treatment by establishing a firm anti-patient brokering component to their Code of Ethics. It says: “Patient brokering is prohibited. No financial rewards, substantive gifts, or other remuneration may be offered for patient referrals. NAATP members must not provide compensation for a patient referral. A NAATP member must not charge or receive compensation for providing a referral.”

Other individual treatment providers who have dedicated decades of ethical treatment to those who suffer from substance use disorders have also written clear and strict codes of ethics for others in their industry who want to protect the integrity of this profession.

Still, with little to no serious regulation (or enforcement of any regulation) around drug and alcohol treatment and unscrupulous people happy to take advantage of the broken system, patients will continue to die as they slip between the cracks. If you are seeking addictions treatment for you or someone you love, do you your homework and thoroughly vet any provider or facility you’re considering. Visit it in person and never accept any gifts as an enticement to enter a program. Remember, if it sounds too good to be true, it is.

Sources

  1. Maryland Addiction Recovery Center. (2016). The Underbelly of Addiction Treatment: A look at the Unethical and Illegal Practices of “Saving Lives”.
  2. The National Association of Addiction Treatment Providers. (2017). Code of Ethics.

 

Dr. Robin Barnett, EdD, LCSW, LCADC, CCS, CSAT is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, Licensed Clinical Alcohol and Drug Counselor, Certified Clinical Supervisor, and Certified Sex Addiction Therapist. She is involved in the fabric of several TV shows, and has appeared on FOX, MTV, CNN, CBS, and NBC. She is currently seen on the Steve Wilkos Show as an Addictions Expert. Her book, “Addict in The House: A No Nonsense Family Guide Through Addiction and Recovery” is the “Go-to” book for thousands of families trapped in this dangerous dysfunction.  Following a successful private practice, Dr. Robin co-founded a highly respected Addictions Treatment Center. She now brings her years of experience and education to the world through her various tv appearances, public speaking, educational and e-therapy services.

slot deposit dana slot deposit dana bandar togel terpercaya slot depo dana bandar togel terpercaya slot deposit dana tanpa potongan slot deposit pulsa 10rb bandar togel terpercaya bandar togel terpercaya bandar togel terpercaya Situs togel terpercaya game slot gacor Bandar Togel Terpercaya situs slot gacor slot deposit dana polisi togel game slot gacor Bandar Togel Terpercaya Bandar Togel Terpercaya Bandar Togel Terpercaya slot deposit dana 10rb Depo Slot Daftar Situs Togel Terpercaya Bandar Togel Terpercaya Bandar Togel Terpercaya daftar slot dana Situs Togel Terpercaya Situs Togel Terpercaya slot deposit dana bandar togel situs slot depo 10k situs slot depo 10k Slot Online Depo 10k slot demo Bandar Togel Terpercaya Situs Togel Terpercaya Slot Deposit Dana Slot Gacor slot demo slot deposit dana Bandar Togel Terpercaya Slot Deposit Pulsa Situs Togel Terpercaya Daftar Slot Gacor Bandar Togel Terpercaya Slot Dana 10k slot deposit pulsa tanpa potongan Bandar Togel Online Terpercaya Terbesar Bandar Togel Terpercaya Bandar Togel Hadiah 4d 10 juta Bandar Togel Terpercaya Situs Togel Terpercaya live draw toto macau live draw cambodia live draw china live draw hk live draw sgp live draw sdy live draw taiwan 10 situs togel terpercaya Bandar Togel Terpercaya slot deposit dana bandar togel Slot Online Pulsa Slot Online Gacor Bandar Togel Terpercaya slot depo 10k Slot Deposit Pulsa Daftar Slot Deposit Dana Bandar Togel Hadiah 4d 10 juta Terpercaya Bandar Togel Terpercaya Slot Deposit Pulsa slot deposit pulsa Live Result SDY Live Result SGP Live Result HK Situs Togel Terpercaya bandar togel terpercaya Daftar Slot Dana Bandar Togel Terpercaya 10 Situs Togel Terpercaya Live Draw SGP Tercepat Hari Ini Live Draw SDY Tercepat Hari Ini Live Draw HK Tercepat Hari Ini Situs Togel Terpercaya Slot Terpercaya Bandar Togel Online Terpercaya Indonesia Daftar Togel Terpercaya Bandar Togel Terpercaya Daftar Slot Situs Togel Terpercaya Slot Pulsa Daftar Bandar Togel Terpercaya Slot Dana Via Dana Slot Gacor Slot Demo Pragmatic slot online Slot Via Dana Bandar Togel Terpercaya Bandar Togel Terpercaya slot deposit pulsa Slot Deposit Dana Bandar Togel Terpercaya Bandar Togel Terpercaya Slot Deposit Pulsa Tanpa Potongan Slot Dana RTP Slot Live Slot Deposit Pulsa Slot Deposit Dana Bandar Togel Terpercaya Slot Deposit Dana Bandar Togel Terpercaya Bandar Togel Bonus Cashback Terbesar Bandar Togel Terperaya Slot Deposit Pulsa Live Draw Tercepat Bandar Togel Terpercaya Slot Deposit Pulsa Tanpa Potongan Slot Deposit Dana Bandar Togel Terpercaya Bocoran Slot Gacor Hari Ini Slot Demo Data HK, Hongkong Pools Bandar Togel Terpercaya Slot Online Demo Daftar Bandar Togel Terpercaya Slot Deposit Pulsa Situs BO Togel Terpercaya Situs Togel Terpercaya Prediksi HK Live Draw HK Situs Slot Online ESMI SLOT Bandar Togel Terpercaya Situs Togel Terpercaya Slot Deposit Dana 5 Bandar Togel Terpercaya Situs Slot Online Deposit Pulsa Agen Togel Terpercaya Bonus besar 2022 Slot Gacor Depo 10rb Terbaik IRAMA SLOT Daftar Bandar Togel 2022 Terbaik Terpercaya Hongkong slot deposit pulsa Prediksi Togel Prediksi Togel Hongkong Prediksi Togel Sydney Prediksi Togel Singapore Angka Keramat Prediksi HK Prediksi SGP Prediksi SDY Prediksi HK SGP SDY Prediksi Togel HK SGP SDY Ratu Prediksi Master prediksi Bandar Togel Terpercaya Tiraijd Data Sdy prediksi HK Daftar Slot Live Draw HK Prediksi HK Prediksi SGP Prediksi SDY Bandar Togel Terpercaya 5 Bandar Togel Terpercaya Daftar Bandar Togel Terpercaya 5 Bandar Togel Terbaik Live Draw Cambodia Live Draw HK Live Draw SGP Live Draw SDY Live Draw HK Live Draw SGP Live Draw SDY Live Draw Taiwan Live Draw Toto Macau Live Draw Toto Macau Data SGP Live Draw Cambodia Data HK Live Draw China Live Draw Taiwan Live Draw SGP Paito SGP Paito HK Paito SDY Data SGP Live Draw HK Live Draw HK 6D Live Draw SGP Live Draw Singapore Live Draw Sydney Live Draw SDY Live Draw Cambodia Live Draw Taiwan Live Draw Toto Macau Paito SGP Bandar Togel Slot Online Togel Online Slot Deposit Pulsa Prediksi HK Prediksi HK Prediksi Togel Live Draw HK Data SDY Situs Togel Bandar Togel Terpercaya Bandar Togel Terpercaya Data HK Live Draw SDY Live Draw Sydney Live Draw Cambodia Live Draw Cambodia Live Draw SGP Live Draw SGP Live Draw Taiwan Live Draw Taiwan Live Draw China Live Draw China Live Draw China Live Draw China Hasil Slot Gacor Data SDY Data SGP Slot Pulsa Bandar Togel Terpercaya Slot Deposit Dana Prediksi HK Slot Deposit Dana Slot Deposit Dana Slot Deposit Pulsa Slot Deposit Dana Slot Gacor Dana Live Draw Cambodia Prediksi Suhu Togel Polisi Togel Live Draw Hk Live Draw Hk Bandar Togel Terpercaya Dan Terbaik