June 10, 2010

Speech Therapy

Every time I turn around, I feel like I'm facing another headache involving health insurance. For the longest time, I was battling our previous carrier over coverage for Sue Sue. Basically, the customer service agent I spoke to on the phone gave me the wrong information. When our astronomical bill arrived the company told me I should have looked up the coverage information on their website rather than rely on what I was told over the phone. Yeah, I won that appeal.
Due to Hubby's new job, we now have a new carrier. I will say I am very pleased with the coverage. We have a much lower deductible and the company pays a much higher percentage after we meet the deductible. Unfortunately, I just found out this particular carrier does not cover speech therapy.
All of my girls have received speech therapy through Early Intervention and preschool since age two. At the end of this recent school year, everyone but Roo was discharged from speech therapy. Roo has made great strides, but still has some work to do on her speech. My thought was to get her speech therapy over the summer at our local children's hospital. It looks like that won't be happening for so many reasons. Our insurance won't cover the therapy because it's not a "medical necessity." After speaking with the speech clinic, we were given a few options. If we pay in advance we would receive a 50% discount. This sounds great until you realize each session is $300 to $600, so we could still shell out $300 per visit. Not really an option on our budget. The Shriner's offer scholarships for speech and learning therapy, provided through the Scottish Rite Foundation. Based on your income, if you are approved for a scholarship, the Foundation will determine your monthly co-pay and then the Foundation will cover the rest. Roo was approved for one of these scholarships, which is a great thing. Unfortunately, even though she has been approved, she's on a waiting list until a scholarship is available. She's also on a waiting list at the speech clinic until an appointment time is available. Sooooo... it looks like my hopes of summer speech therapy won't be happening, but at least she'll resume therapy through school in just a few months. In the meantime, I have some worksheets and materials from the school therapist to work on this summer... you know in all that free time we have!
I'm curious... I know some of my readers have children who also receive speech therapy. Does your insurance cover these services?

10 comments:

MaryAnne said...

We are just barely starting this at our house. There's a hospital about twenty minutes away that our insurance will cover (apart from the copay, of course), but they told me that their wait list was several months long. So I went with the next-closest place, which is a 40-minute drive (assuming zero traffic) away. I knew it was expensive, but didn't realize it cost THAT much - glad we get some coverage, even if it is a long drive!

Quadmama said...

Keep track of the miles you drive... you can claim "medical miles" on your taxes.

MaryAnne said...

Thanks for the tip - I didn't know that!

Sadia said...

What a pain! Our insurance covers speech completely. Fantastic coverage is one of the perks of military life.

I do know that the speech pathology department at the university at which I work offers services; since students have to put in clinical hours, I wonder whether you could get cheaper/free sessions at a college.

My girls have been discharged from speech, but Melody still has quite a bit of work to do. She knows what to do, but she forgets when she has something important to say (and EVERYTHING is important), so we have speech homework on our hands too.

Quadmama said...

I didn't think about the area colleges. Unfortunately the majority of the students end up working through/with the children's hospital, so it may not make a difference price wise.... but I'll have to look into it.

Marilynne said...

I always thought your girls were talking up a storm all the time. Well, I guess that could be true and still all of them need speech therapy. I'm glad you found a solution for Roo.

Quadmama said...

Oh they talk up a storm... Roo just needs some help with "sm" words. She tends to leave the "sm" off (wim, mell, etc).

Christina said...

What a pain in the rear....good luck with everything Momma.
xoxo

Denise said...

I remember when our daughter required speech therapy when she was young, we had to pay out of pocket because our insurance did not cover it. I remember setting up a "payment plan" with them. It felt like years that I was paying for those services, but the outcome was so worth it!

mwongela said...

Hi, my country - Kenya has no single local speech therapist yet so I m looking for a scholarship to be able to study and fill in the gap. any ideas? mwongeza@gmail.com

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