Despite Resources From The ACA Most States Do Little To Help Addiction Treatment Programs Implement Health Care Reform
Author: Christina Andrews, Amanda Abraham, Colleen M. Grogan, Harold A. Pollack, Clifford Bersamira, Keith Humphreys, Peter Friedmann
The Affordable Care Act (ACA) dramatically expands health insurance for addiction treatment and provides unprecedented opportunities for service growth and delivery model reform. Yet most addiction treatment programs lack the staffing and technological capabilities to respond successfully to ACA-driven system change. In light of these challenges, we conducted a national survey to examine how Single State Agencies for addiction treatment—the state governmental organizations charged with overseeing addiction treatment programs—are helping programs respond to new requirements under the ACA. We found that most Single State Agencies provide little assistance to addiction treatment programs. Most agencies are helping programs develop collaborations with other health service programs. However, fewer than half reported providing help in modernizing systems to support insurance participation, and only one in three provided assistance with enrollment outreach. In the absence of technical assistance, it is unlikely that addiction treatment programs will fully realize the ACA’s promise to improve access to and quality of addiction treatment.