A Mental Health crisis is unfolding around the world. Millions of people are under considerable stress, surrounded by disease and have been forced into isolation, all of that is creating a collective traumatic experience. Combine that with the economic stress of the pandemic forcing many people to be laid off and facing money problems only amplifies the problem.
There is panic over physical safety across the board, with people never leaving the house without their mask and disinfectant in tow. For most of us, never have we faced such collective concern over our physical health, and rightfully so.
It is paramount that we, as a society, do our part to quell the spread of COVID-19 as quickly as possible to ensure the health and safety of our family and friends. But we should not forget about mental health during this time and also talk about where health insurance fits into the equation.
What’s Currently Covered?
“Mental health treatment and extended rehabilitation from debilitating and neurological conditions will soon be covered by mandatory health insurance in Dubai as part of the public health strategy,” according to reports.
To reference other news on the subject, “The UAE Government is regularly undertaking new measures to address mental health issues and reduce the stigma associated with it. It has come up with many initiatives for Emiratis and expatriates by giving them access to mental health services and support as required.”
As it stands today, mental health coverage is included as part of some international health insurance policies as an added value. We are witnessing positive steps being taken globally to ensure that mental health coverage is being addressed.
What Needs to be Done About Mental Health:
Mental health should not be overlooked; you should ask your insurance broker about it when looking for a new plan. It is often the case that in times of great distress we tend to focus on the physical and neglect the mental aspects of our health. The assumption is always made that the priority must lie with the physical health, while mental health is almost regarded as almost extra-curricular in a sense; it is often perceived as being a bonus and often left unaddressed until major problems begin to arise, and even then those are often left unchecked.
There is an intense amount of psychological strain being put on the average person during periods of quarantine. From the anxiety of worrying about the safety of yourself and your loved ones, to the intense feeling of isolation when forced to distance yourself from society, to the potential degradation of preexisting conditions due to the strain of an uncertain future.
Reem Shaheen, Counseling Psychologist, Founder and Director of BE Psychology Center for Emotional wellbeing DMCC, said, “It is unfortunate and sad that individuals today have to jump through hoops to get mental health coverage. In my practice, I see lots of people withdraw from therapy, or don’t even engage in therapy because of lack of coverage.”
She added, “Mental health is just as important as physical health, furthermore, mental illness can be much more debilitating than physical health, hence it is essential for employers, government and insurance companies to include it in their employees’ policies.”
Talking To Your Insurance Broker About Mental Health Coverage:
In the same vein that you view health insurance as a necessity to your physical health, mental health services must also be on the forefront of your mind. Much like you wouldn’t leave a broken arm to heal on its own, it is vital to seek professional medical attention to help overcome any struggles you may be facing in these uncertain times.
It only starts with booking a simple appointment with a mental health professional for you to begin your journey into a more stable mindset. Although some social stigma exists around the concept of seeking mental health services, no degree of stigma is worth neglecting this vital part of your life. Taking care of your mental health could mean the difference between a stable life and one of significantly less consistency.
A major reason for many people not seeking help regarding their mental health is due to lack of accessibility. This is where health insurance comes into play. By selecting the right insurance plan for your personal needs and values, you can ensure that your psychological needs are being taken care of by the appropriate authorities and that you can do your best to thrive in a post-COVID landscape. Check in with your insurance brokers to see what can be done to help you or your loved ones in these trying times, and make sure those you care about most are living their healthiest lives, pandemic or not.
Contact one of our health insurance experts for advice on which plan is right for you and how to navigate health insurance: by email or phone 800-PETRA or reach out on social media: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn.