Florida’s Drug Treatment Has Fallen Off The Wagon: Here’s What You Should Know

Florida is known to some in the addiction field as the rehab capital of the world, rivaling even the sunny coastal areas of lush California and the resort rehabs they offer. But to those who flock to Florida seeking out the care they need to get better and get their lives on track, it’s a different story.
Each year, thousands fleeing from a life of addiction come from Pennsylvania, New Jersey, West Virginia and Ohio alike to the beautiful beaches of south Florida. In Palm Beach County, NBC News wanted to dive a little deeper into what really goes on and what they found was astonishing. Many of those finding their way down to Florida for recovery find themselves taken advantage of in what can only be called an insurance fraud mill. Owners of “sober homes” and treatment centers that are crooked partner up together and hunt for addicts that might have good insurance. They convince the addicts to go to their partnered up treatment center or sober home by offering gift cards to grocery stores, free rent, or cigarettes. The centers and homes then collect on high insurance bounties and get kick-backs for each patient they get into a bed. It’s become so rampant that there’s even a term for those in charge of hunting down addicts, “body brokers.” Once they get patients in the door, the scam doesn’t stop there, they don’t go on to actually help these vulnerable people get better, they simply go on with the scam.Billing out insurance agencies for costly and unnecessary drug tests, questionable therapies and counseling, as well as other exotic lab screens. What’s worse, some of these treatment centers turn a blind eye to drug use while others actually encourage it, after all, relapse means more money in their pockets. Fortunately, Palm Beach County officials are starting to recognize the danger and investigate. Officials have begun cracking down where they can, making arrests and doing their best to get a handle on this dangerous situation. ReferenceSeville, L.R. “ Florida’s Billion-Dollar Drug Treatment Industry Is Plagued by Overdoses, Fraud”. NBC News. (website). June 2017
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