Mental health care is an important part of Medicare coverage, and if you suffer from mental illness, you can get access to the care you need to improve your condition. If you qualify for Medicare benefits due to age or disability, your coverage can help cover the costs of mental health care, including inpatient or outpatient care and services and prescription medications you may be prescribed to help reduce your symptoms.
Treating Schizophrenia and Bipolar Disorder with Seroquel
Seroquel, or the generic Quetiapine, is an oral prescription medication known as an atypical antipsychotic. It is approved by the U.S Food and Drug Administration for treatment of schizophrenia in people 13 years of age or older, bipolar disorder in adults (including both depressive and manic episodes), and manic episodes related to bipolar 1 in children ages 10-17.
Seroquel tablets are used to treat specific mental illnesses by helping to restore the balance of neurotransmitters in the brain. It can be effective in reducing the symptoms of schizophrenia. According to the National Institute of Mental Health, schizophrenia is a chronic and severe mental disorder that can present with positive, negative, and cognitive symptoms. Positive symptoms can include hallucinations, delusions, and thought or movement disorders. Negative symptoms include losing the ability to enjoy daily activities, having difficulty speaking, and reduced expression of emotions. Cognitive symptoms can make it hard to concentrate, focus, or make decisions.
Patients with manic or depressive episodes related to bipolar disorder may also benefit from Seroquel when taken as directed by a physician. Bipolar disorder causes unusual, intense shifts in mood, energy, activity level, sleep, and the ability to perform daily functions. Depending on a patient’s specific condition, Seroquel can help prevent or decrease the frequency of severe mood swings.
Proper diagnosis and treatment of mental illness, such as schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, can lead to an improvement in quality of life. With the appropriate supervision of a physician, patients can enjoy healthy and productive lives. If you or a loved one is experiencing changes in behavior, moods, or abilities, make an appointment to visit your physician.
How Medicare Can Help
Medicare understands the importance of mental health care and includes services and programs to help diagnose and treat mental health conditions. These services and programs may be provided in outpatient and inpatient settings.
Part A (Hospital Insurance) covers the cost of inpatient care you may receive for mental health care if you are formally admitted to a Medicare-approved hospital. Medicare Part B (Medical Insurance) helps cover the costs of mental health services and care you receive at a doctor’s office or in an outpatient setting, including one depression screening per year. This can include visits with a psychiatrist, a clinical psychologist, clinical social worker, clinical nurse specialist, nurse practitioner, or other medical provider who accepts assignment. It will also include diagnostic exams and lab tests ordered by your doctor.
Medicare Part D prescription drug coverage can help cover the cost of Seroquel when prescribed by your doctor. If you have Original Medicare, you can enroll in a stand-alone Prescription Drug Plan (PDP). Some Medicare recipients choose to get their Medicare benefits through a Medicare Advantage (MA) plan. MA plans are required to provide at least the same Part A and Part B benefits as Original Medicare, but many include more, such as prescription drug coverage. Each drug plan will have its own formulary, or list of covered drugs, so check with your plan to make sure your medication will be covered. Plans will have their own tiers of pricing for generic, brand name, and mail order prescriptions. Compare prescription drug plans before enrolling to find the coverage that meets your specific needs.