Despite increased stress, mental health treatment didn't rise in 2020, Anthem report shows

Lauren Jensik - Print  | 

Though 2020 was a reportedly stressful year, treatment rates for mental health problems did not increase, according to a published Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield report called "State of the Nation's Mental Health."

An analysis of 900,000 Anthem BCBS claims made by members in Colorado showed diagnosis and treatment rates were significantly lower than those reported in 2019, according to a news release.

Declines included a 4 percent drop in treatment of young children, a 2 percent drop for adolescents, an 8 percent drop for children diagnosed with ADHD and an 8 percent drop for adults older than 75 diagnosed with depression.

Among the only diagnoses that grew in 2020 were those for anxiety and PTSD in adults, the release said.

An analysis of data from Anthem's pharmacy benefits manager, IngenioRx, showed that while usage of medication was up in 2020, the increase could be attributed to existing users. New users increased at the same rate as those in 2019, the release said.

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