MassHealth no longer covering treatment for acne

I was just told by someone with a teenager that MassHealth has stopped
covering the teen's prescription acne medication, since they view it
as a cosmetic treatment. I suppose it is, technically, since it
doesn't cause serious physiological harm even when people get
infections from it. Still, did they not consider the mental health
aspects? Teenagers are really cruel to each other about this stuff,
especially in the case of kids like this one, who has mild MR and is
in regular classes. He's already a teasing magnet.

I'm guessing the decision is solely financial -- a medication that's
commonly used and could be cut without a huge outrage that kids will
be dying in the streets or anything. Because it's not rational from
any other standpoint; they still cover repairs to "cosmetic"
disfigurements that are either congenital or a clear result of
disease. They even cover plastic surgery to revise injury scars that
healed badly. It would be interesting to see if this would apply to
acne scars; probably not, but interesting to toy with the idea of
MassHealth covering expensive repair of disfigurement that resulted
from MassHealth not paying for a cheaper-than-surgery medication.



2 comments:

realsupergirl said...

while I agree with everything you say, it seems entirely consistent with insurance companies not covering contact lenses or sex change operations, since both are also considered "cosmetic."

as long as we have health system which is based on profit, we will have corporations drawing these lines for us. this is the underlying problem here.

eeka said...

Yes. To all of that.

Grr.