To estimate the general medical costs of individuals who received behavioral health care, the authors analyzed a large commercial New England insurer's 2002 claims for approximately 450,000 individuals. CPT and ICD-9 codes, place of service, provider specialty, and psychotropic medication claims were used to differentiate individuals who received specialty and nonspecialty behavioral health care. Their findings provide further empirical support for the substantial general medical costs of individuals who receive behavioral health care. In older age cohorts, general medical costs for individuals who received nonspecialty behavioral health care exceeded the general medical costs of those who received specialty behavioral health care; among adolescents and young adults, the converse is true.
This report is part of the RAND Corporation External publication series. Many RAND studies are published in peer-reviewed scholarly journals, as chapters in commercial books, or as documents published by other organizations.
Our mission to help improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis is enabled through our core values of quality and objectivity and our unwavering commitment to the highest level of integrity and ethical behavior. To help ensure our research and analysis are rigorous, objective, and nonpartisan, we subject our research publications to a robust and exacting quality-assurance process; avoid both the appearance and reality of financial and other conflicts of interest through staff training, project screening, and a policy of mandatory disclosure; and pursue transparency in our research engagements through our commitment to the open publication of our research findings and recommendations, disclosure of the source of funding of published research, and policies to ensure intellectual independence. For more information, visit www.rand.org/about/research-integrity.
The RAND Corporation is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.