Increased mental health benefits

I have been reading lately about the increased health benefits that a lot of employers are now providing and it makes me wonder … while I appreciate the better coverage for psychologist etc , I am not sure about the trend to heal people via digital platforms or DNA swabs to determine the optimal drug.

What are your opinions?


I don’t know what this means.

Is it related to mental health treatments?
I’m guessing digital treatment would be cheaper.

In my requested file copy my caseworker had inquired to a genetics company about my being a candidate for their offered DNA test for an optimal drug for treatment. I suspect it was shut down by their legal department, but there were no other references to it in my file beyond the initial query.

I imagine she was hoping I would refuse to take it and she could terminate me for non-compliance.

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I don’t think think they could terminate you.
They can’t force a specific treatment on you.
As long as you’re receiving a conventional treatment that your medical doctor thinks is appropriate then you should be ok.
There are probably a lot of privacy issues around DNA testing (is the DNA testing through a private Canadian company?).

Here is the answer …just what I read on the internet…

***Telemedicine and telehealth also play a role in ensuring quicker turnaround times for employees with mental health issues

Cognitive behavioural therapy — delivered in an internet or digital format — is a possible solution and effective alternative to traditional face-to-face consultation**

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My disability insurer very much did force a specific treatment plan (exposure therapy) and threatened me with non-compliance of attendance until my medical doctor said I was not able to participate when their psychotherapist (who hadn’t even seen me) approved the plan ‘based on notes she received’.

The DNA testing was through a Canadian company but I suspect the legal department told her I could not be forced to give DNA.

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So they tried unsuccessfully to force a treatment plan?
They can try to bully people but they probably won’t win a lawsuit against people with medical support. :slight_smile:

I personally did DNA test to determine a better drug treatment plan for me. It was suggested by my doctor and not the insurance company. They just swab inside your mouth. The result shows a list of multiple drugs/medications that your body can and cannot tolerate. So the ones that your body can tolerate well are used for your treatment. It is nothing to be scared about.


Good point Elaine!!! I don’t think there’s anything sinister going on here Marilyn. It’s great that you discovered this info in your insurance file. Unfortunately, your insurance company decided not to make the investment in you and offer the “DNA” testing. This DNA testing is in the field of pharmacogentics (also known as personalized medicine or precision medicine). It was quite expensive a few years ago, but can really be a “win-win”. Rather than suffering endlessly and trying medicines that don’t work at the wrong doses, this science can really help. It sounds like there are options to pay for the testing privately. There may be funding from other sources as well.


Jammer - What I’m reading into this is that Marilyn was receiving disability benefits. Her disability insurer created a Rehabilitation Plan. It is mandatory for a claimant to participate in Rehabilitation (i.e. it is NOT optional and it is not up to the claimant’s doctor to decide how/when/who). The insurer has lots of medical people reviewing the case. The Rehabilitation plan included Exposure Therapy (e.g. could be standard treatment for something like PTSD). If the claimant refuses to participate in the Rehabilitation Plan (i.e. even try or show up at the very first planning meeting), he will be “non-complaint” and he will be “cut off his benefits” and it will be very, very hard to get back on benefits and really hard to find a lawyer to work on a “contingency” basis to represent him in a lawsuit because lawyers only take on cases where the lawyer’s own money is at risk where the lawyer can win. The insurer will send the Rehabilitation Plan to your treating physician. Your Treating Physician can strongly disagree with the Rehabilitation Plan by writing letters, etc. back to the insurer. So, there’s a bit more to it than what Marilyn said in her comment, but she’s not entirely wrong. I don’t think the insurer was necessarily “bullying”, but it’s quite wrong to think that the claimant or the claimant’s doctor can tell the insurer what to do. The insurer was trying to implement a very effective, and very expensive, standard rehabilitation plan and Marilyn’s treating physician, quite rightly, pushed back and got them to stop. That’s the way it works. The lesson is you absolutely need to comply (show up to day 1 of Rehab) until the insurance company officially steps back otherwise they will cut you off. They are waiting for you to say “no” I won’t. Don’t get baited. There’s entirely too much discussion about “sue, sue, sue”. Far too many deserving people get cut off disability benefits because they don’t understand their obligations.

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I was the employee contact for the plan and processed initial applications. I knew procedure, obligations and participated in treatment until it became detrimental to my health, I regressed to a worse state without the proper psychological treatment methods recommended by my regular treating doctor. Through internal notes on my file, my case manager admits to “dropping the ball” on not requesting an update from my doctor for 5 months despite my documented bi-weekly emails asking if they needed one from her.

My claim has a twist as well. Although the insurer initially cited non-compliance for lack of participation in return to work vocational program, it was corrected by a higher department that my benefits were actually terminated over a financial/responsibility dispute between my insurer and former employer (who had terminated the contract with my insurer to change to a new, cheaper insurer) Each asserting the other is responsible for my claim payment. This is an ongoing legal issue between them, but has affected my mental state.

At this point, my insurer continues to pay my monthly benefit, but my treatment is now private and paid out of my own pocket. As @David_Brannen recommends, I receive regular and consistent medical care with supporting written documentation from all the doctors and specialists that I actively participate in a medical treatment plan.

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Several years ago I asked my then case manager about DNA testing but she said she never heard about it.