Living With

How do I get Mental Health Services with No Money and No Insurance?

Merely Me Health Guide May 18, 2009
  • Over the months I have spent here on My Depression Connection, I have answered a lot of your questions.  Many of these questions focus upon acquiring mental health services.  It has occurred to me that as I offer up a suggestion to contact a therapist or even to try medication, many of you do not have the money or the insurance to pay for these services.  In these bad economic times, it is hard enough to put food on the table let alone pay for mental health care. 

     

    In response to those of you who simply cannot afford to pay a therapist or pay for mental health treatment, I wanted to compile a resource list of ways you can find care despite your lack of funds.

     

    I want this post to be on-going and additive, meaning I want you to post comments of any other resources you know about out there to help others who do not have the financial means to pay for mental health care.  Working together as a community, I am hoping to create the best list for resources for those who need it.  Please help me to keep compiling information here. 

     

    Hotlines

    If you ever feel like you are suicidal or wish to harm yourself I want you to call one of the many hotlines out there for this purpose.

     

    Here are some numbers should you ever need them:

     

    1-800-273-8255

     

    1800-784-2433

     

    1800-799-4889  

     

    There is also 24 hour email support for those who are feeling suicidal which you may find here

     

    There are also hotline numbers given by the National Mental Health Information Center from topics ranging from children's mental health to substance abuse treatment.  Just follow this link.

     

    Finding a Therapist or Mental Health Center:

     

    When I was a young adult I was suffering from my mood disorder but had nowhere to turn.  I was in college and was working for minimum wage at a bakery.  I hardly had funds for a therapist.  But someone told me about the community center where I lived and that I could possibly find help there.  I called and found someone to see who was a graduate student training to become a counselor.  She wasn't so experienced yet but she did help me get through some very trying times.  So help is out there.  You just have to be creative in looking for it and too you may have to adjust your expectations of the services you may receive. 

     

    Here are some resources which may help you:

     

    *  The Partnership for Prescription Assistance has a Free Clinic Finder if you type in your zipcode you will find clinics in your area.

     

    *  The U.S. Department of Health and Human Resources also has a listing of free clinics in your area.  All you have to do is plug in your geographic location.  You may find that listing here.

     

    *  The National Alliance on Mental Illness may also provide information of where to find treatment or mental health care in your area.  You may call them toll free at 1-800-950-NAMI or contact them through their web site which you may find here.

     

    *  Here is a listing of toll free numbers to call to mental health clinics across the country.

     

    *  Here is another listing of free clinics to search for in your geographic area.

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    *  Find a Community Mental Health Center here.

     

    *  The federal government provides a Mental Health Services locator here.

     

     

    How to get Financial Help for Prescription Medications and Antidepressants:

     

    I found a cheap way to get my son's Prozac was by using Walmart's prescription program and it is only $4 to get his prescription filled.  I will tell you more about this plan as well as other financial assistance programs for paying for medications.

     

    *  Here is a listing of all the prescription meds that Walmart will fill for just four dollars.

     

    Some of the antidepressants listed include:

     

    - Amitriptyline (Elavil)
    - Citalopram (Celexa, which is the older version of Lexapro)
    - Doxepin (Adapine or Sinquan)
    - Fluoxetine (Prozac)
    - Nortriptyline (Aventyl)
    - Paroxetine (Paxil)
    - Trazodone (Desyrel or Trialodine)

     

    * There is also an organization called Needy Meds which may be able to give you assistance in obtaining your medications.  Just follow this link.

     

    Mental Health America also has some ideas of how you can get your medications paid for when you don't have the financial means.

     

    *  You may also call the Partnership for Prescription Assistance with this toll free number:  1-888-477-2669 or you may access their web site here.

     

    Mental Health Resources:

     

    There are quite a few mental health resources out there to give you even more ideas and suggestions of how to obtain treatment, therapy, or medications when you are uninsured or have no money to pay for services.

     

    Please feel free to add to this list:

     

    The Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance

     

    The National Alliance on Mental Illness

     

    Befrienders World Wide

     

    Psych Central Support Groups

     

    Lastly I am going to leave you with some informational articles I had found on my search for resources.  Again, please add to this list in the comment section and I will add them to this article.

     

    A Consumer's Guide to Mental Health Services

     

    *  CNN Health presents "No Health Insurance?  Get Help Here."

     

    *  US News and World Report tells you six ways to get affordable mental health services here.

     

    *  The Daily Kos tells you how to get free or low cost mental health care here.

     

    *  Psych Central tells us how to find low cost Psychotherapy here.

     

    *  About.com also shares ways of how to find free treatment for depression which you may find here.

     

    I really hope this information helps someone out there who needs it.  As I have said before, I do encourage any of you to add to this list.  You will definitely help others with your additions.