Why Should Art and Music Therapy Be Covered by Health Insurance?
Despite a growing body of evidence highlighting the advantages of art and music therapy, most health insurance companies still do not cover these services. This deficiency in coverage is hindering access to treatment for those who could most benefit from them.
Art and music therapy are complementary therapies that utilize creative arts as a means of treating mental health issues. They assist patients in improving emotional, social, cognitive, and physical functioning. They have applications in schools, hospitals, wellness and senior centers, private practices and other settings where counseling or medical care is provided.
Many are aware of the positive effects music can have on mental health, but did you know art therapy also has these same benefits? Studies have demonstrated that art therapy can improve moods, reduce stress and promote relaxation. Furthermore, individuals in recovery can use art therapy to increase self-awareness, decrease relapse triggers and increase their overall sense of well-being.
When you are feeling down and out, listening to music can often bring about an immediate improvement in mood. This same effect occurs when you get lost in your own creativity and start creating artwork. Additionally, engaging in creative expression with a therapist may bring about similar feelings of calm, relaxation, and increased self-awareness.
Art and music therapy have been scientifically proven to be successful at treating mental health conditions, making them a much more cost-effective alternative than traditional talk therapy which often fails to address issues like depression or anxiety. With health insurance coverage, this becomes even more of an advantage over other therapeutic practices like psychoanalysis which are rarely successful at treating such issues.
Furthermore, art and music therapy are affordably priced, making them a viable option for those with limited financial resources. This is especially true for those on a tight budget or without employer-provided coverage.
In New York, there is an urgent need for this type of therapy. It plays a significant role in treating eating disorders and other mental health conditions by giving people a voice and an outlet to express emotions which might otherwise go unspoken.
However, not all therapists offer this type of service. Some simply aren’t licensed or lack the expertise needed for it.
This is an issue that must be addressed. We should make it a priority to make art and music therapy accessible for everyone who is interested in them.
The next step to make art and music therapy more accessible is for it to be regulated at the state level. This will enable those who require this type of treatment to locate a qualified therapist who holds certification in this field.
Rhode Island, for instance, is considering adding art and music therapy as a complementary form of mental health care that would be covered by insurance. This will increase access to this form of therapy and encourage more therapists to become trained in it.