Who Pays for a 72-Hour Hold?

By Jared Levenson - Reviewed on July 5, 2023
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Mental health is crucial to overall well-being, yet it often goes overlooked and undiscussed. When mental health issues escalate, emergency measures may need to be taken.

One such measure is the 72-hour hold, also known as an involuntary commitment or psychiatric hold. But who foots the bill for this?

The Online Mental Health Reviews team is uniquely qualified to write about 72-hour payments due to our extensive professional experience in mental health care, including work at residential centers, licensed counseling, and research and writing standards.

Let’s delve into the topic.

What is a 72-Hour Hold?

A 72-hour hold, also known as a “5150” or “involuntary psychiatric hold,” is a legal procedure that allows medical professionals to confine a person deemed a danger to themselves or others due to mental illness. This hold lasts up to 72 hours, during which the patient receives psychiatric evaluation and treatment.

Criteria for a 72-Hour Hold

For a 72-hour hold to be legally implemented, certain criteria must be met:

1. The person must pose a serious threat of physical harm to themselves or others (cannot self-initiate a 5150).

2. The threat must be imminent.

3. The danger must be due to a severe mental illness.

4. Voluntary treatment options have been declined or are not suitable.

Who Pays for the 72-Hour Hold?

72-hour Rule and Some A-Hole Rule Explained

The question of who pays for a 72-hour hold can depend on several legal factors:

  • Private Insurance Providers: If a patient has private insurance, the insurer will likely cover the cost of a 72-hour hold, depending on the policy’s specific terms. Some insurers may require pre-authorization or impose other conditions.
  • Medicaid/Medicare: These government programs generally cover the cost of a 72-hour hold for eligible individuals. However, specific requirements and limitations may depend on the state and the individual’s eligibility status.
  • Self-Pay: In cases where a patient lacks insurance and doesn’t qualify for government assistance, they may be responsible for the costs. Some hospitals may offer payment plans or financial assistance programs.

5150 Hold’s Cost (No Insurance)

The cost of psychiatric hospitalization in the United States ranges from $800 to $1,500 per day on average, while it greatly varies by region and hospital, according to research into healthcare cost databases.

The Fischer Institute claims that the cost of a 5150 hold could be significantly higher without insurance. In 2017, the typical price was around $2,264. However, this cost can vary significantly.

How are Charges Determined?

Hospitals and clinics calculate charges for a 72-hour hold based on various factors, including the hold length, the services provided (such as medication, counseling, and medical care), and the hospital’s specific policies. Patient insurance coverage can also significantly impact the final cost.

Resources for Patients and Families

Navigating the payment process for a 72-hour hold can be daunting. Fortunately, there are resources available to help:

  • Local mental health agencies and social workers can guide the process.
  • Nonprofit organizations specializing in mental health advocacy can offer support and advice.
  • Hospitals and clinics often have financial counselors or billing specialists who can discuss payment options and assist with insurance matters.

The goal is to inform and reassure you that resources, treatment teams, and support are available even in challenging times. Mental health care, including emergency measures like a 72-hour hold, should be accessible to everyone, regardless of their financial situation.

While the cost of a 72-hour hold can vary greatly, the importance of mental health cannot be overstated.

What Happens After 72 Hours?

Who Pays For 72-Hour Hold Conclusion

In general, three types of parties pay for 72-hour holds: individuals through self-pay if no insurance, private insurance, or Medical/Medicaid.

Remember, if you need to reach a lawyer or expert for urgent questions, Just Answer’s $5 trial is a reasonable option. Our team has bought and reviewed Just Answer, and we believe this service could be helpful when navigating the complexities of the healthcare industry.

Our team hopes this information was helpful. If you have any questions about the challenging of a 72 hour hold, 72 hour hold laws, involuntary commitment, visiting privileges, cost of a 72-hour hold with insurance, or without insurance, or who pays for a 72-hour, feel free to leave a comment below.

We’d also love your suggestions on what mental health software product Online Mental Health Reviews should evaluate next. Your input is highly appreciated!

If You’re In An Emergency

If you’re experiencing a crisis, delaying help until your next online therapy session might be unsafe. Immediate help is available. If you’re in immediate danger of serious harm or plan to harm yourself or others, dial 911 immediately. You also have the option to reach out to the 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline by punching in 988 on your phone if you’re contemplating self-harm. Assistance is accessible around the clock.

Moreover, you can contact the National Helpline of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) at 800-662-HELP (4357). This helpline offers free and confidential services that assist individuals struggling with mental health or substance abuse disorders to find treatment and gather relevant information. This help is available 24/7, all year round.

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