Sober Homes, Insurance Companies, Fraud? In Florida? No way!

Sober Homes, Insurance Companies, Fraud? In Florida? No way!

 

So I got a heads up yesterday that some of these treatment places are offering free rent and plane ticket down here to Florida.

Some how the treatment center pays for the sober home after over  billing the insurance. This has got to be looked into.

Why?

Because of greedy scammers many people who would need for this to paid for will loose it. This will become the headline. Then everyone will loose.

I found this online:

Should sober living houses be covered by insurance? INTERVIEW with Opportunities Halfway House

I can’t comment on this place because I do not know them but they sound nice.

Brittany Ringersen was the person speaking in the interview.

“Some of the principles and qualities a family should look for are structure and supervision. You want to find a house where the residents are required to go to meetings, have a sponsor, obtain employment and do chores. It is also very important that the residents be drug tested at least on a weekly basis to insure the sobriety of everyone living in the house.

The number one sign of a poorly managed halfway house is one where residents are allowed to use drugs and alcohol while living there. You would think that this is a rare occurrence, but it happens much more often than you would think.

Another big warning sign is if the house is co-ed, with men and women living under the same roof. It can be very uncomfortable for a newly sober woman to have a male roommate, especially if she has a history of sexual or physical abuse, which many women in recovery do.”

She said

“I would love to see all sober living and halfway houses registered with some form of a regulation agency either on a county or state level. It requires the facilities to have certain policy and procedures from intakes to discharges. This prevents facilities from practices that are unethical, such as unauthorized billing of insurance to having a “flop house” which allows residents to use mind altering substances without consequences. Having these types of changes will force all of the facilities to uphold a level of ethics which is missing in a lot of sober livings.

Unfortunately, it appears that a lot of insurance companies are getting involved with halfway houses without their approval or knowledge. What has been happening lately is that many Intensive Outpatient programs have been offering free rent as an incentive for clients to come to their program. What they then do is find halfway houses willing to house their clients and be paid directly by the treatment center. The insurance companies are being billed for “case management” services and have no idea that the money is actually going to pay the client’s rent.

 

The definition of a halfway is https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Halfway_house

A halfway house is a place that allows people with physical, mental, and emotional disabilities to learn the social and other skills necessary to integrate or re-integrate into society.

The environment features varying degrees of privacy, social work, medical, psychiatric, and other similar services as well as residence halls for the patients. Two main types are found in the U.S.

In the first type, upon admission, a patient is classified as to the type of disability, ability to re-integrate into society, and expected time frame for doing so. They may be placed into an open bay same-sex dormitory similar to that found in military basic training with fifty or a hundred similar residents in a gymnasium-type setting all going through the same thing at the same time. As the patient is able to increase his skill level and decrease his dependency on support services, the dorm members become fewer to the point where, at the final stage before being able to get their own apartment, the patient may have only one or two roommates.

The other type is reversed, housing new patients in individual rooms providing one-to-one services and programming, and as they become more independent, the dorms become bigger so that by the time the patient leaves, they are living in the 50-to-100 man dorm described above.

This is not a sober home. All a sober home is is a place where people live and remain sober. Right?

You can go here with this website Sober Living Florida.

Cool if you get an insurance company to pay your rent at a place with meals , free internet, a swimming pool, and a gym membership. It’

There are some good places btw that provide a good service. These good places will be hurt unless we do something about the bad places.

The people who really need these group homes like the developmentally disabled and the mentally ill will be hurt because I fear that everyone will thrown in the same basket.

It’s Pill Mill’s all over again.

Here is a good piece from the Sun Sentinel.

Cary Glickstein:Some sober homes owners scamming public

State and federal lawmakers, Department of Justice and HUD officials, and mental health agencies must act to curb widespread abuses associated with sober homes and the addiction treatment industry that fights any intrusion into its unregulated, unaccountable and hugely profitable turf.

Sober homes — group homes for persons in recovery from drug/alcohol abuse — are intended as a last step in the continuum of substance abuse/addiction treatment. Sadly for many, they are far from the last step.

The good actors, regrettably, appear outnumbered by unscrupulous opportunists and profiteers preying on the misfortunes of vulnerable people seeking wellness in sober homes that operate with impunity from even the most basic regulations — no training, licensing, registration, background checks, inspection or accountability requirements of any kind. Desperate parents (many out of state) are duped by slick websites with palm trees and sunsets offering hope, but producing little.

“Exploiting our well-intentioned FHA and ADA laws drafted to protect those with disabilities and handicaps from housing discrimination, many sober house operators game the system, fighting any attempt to license or regulate what is by any definition a business. This, despite claims of convicted drug dealers and sex offenders operating sober homes, claims of sexual barter/assault (for rent) within sober homes, insurance and Medicaid fraud, patient brokering, unsafe and hostile living conditions (within and around sober homes), and grossly expensive and often unsuccessful therapies.xploiting our well-intentioned FHA and ADA laws drafted to protect those with disabilities and handicaps from housing discrimination, many sober house operators game the system, fighting any attempt to license or regulate what is by any definition a business. This, despite claims of convicted drug dealers and sex offenders operating sober homes, claims of sexual barter/assault (for rent) within sober homes, insurance and Medicaid fraud, patient brokering, unsafe and hostile living conditions (within and around sober homes), and grossly expensive and often unsuccessful therapies.”

Here is a list of the hundreds of drug rehabs in Florida. These are NOT sober homes. They are treatment centers.

http://www.rehabs.com/local/florida/

 

Negron deals deathly blow to sober homes bill

State Sen. Joe Negron likely has killed a sober homes bill pushed by Port St. Lucie to give the state some control over the controversial facilities.

The bill’s last committee hurdle was a stop this week in the Senate Appropriations Committee chaired by Negron, R-Stuart, but he did not take up the bill because sponsor Sen. Jeff Clemens, D-Lake Worth, did not want to accept an amendment that would gut most of its language, Clemens said. Committees are not scheduled to meet anymore this session.

Although the House has passed its version of the bill, Clemens said there’s little chance the Senate will hear the legislation to allow the Department of Children and Families to license and inspect sober homes for recovering drug and alcohol addicts and do background screenings on operators.

The amendment would have replaced those regulations with a task force to study the welfare and safety of residents.

Residential neighborhoods in South Florida have become a hub for those facilities, which have started to creep into the Treasure Coast, in particular Port St. Lucie. The city has been involved in litigation with two sober home operators.

Some “sober homes” bill insurance and some do not. I believe and you can correct me if they bill directly they are subject to inspections of billing.

If any  of these places are billing Medicare then they are subject to someone looking at the billing practices.

To think otherwise is utterly ridiculous.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Gathering Weekly Photo

Gathering

May 4th,2014 We had a funeral for the St Lucie River and the Indian River Lagoon which had been devastated by discharges from Lake Okeechobee.  Both turned green with poisonous green toxic algae. Our lives would never be the same again.

As a way to protest we held this funeral at Phipps Park which the park next to the the “Gates of Hell” where the water out and runs into the river and the lagoon.

DSC_0062

 

Here is a video that Brad Langel shot with his drone. There is a great shot of the St Lucie Locks that will be opened when Lake Okeechobee is too high. That’s when we get polluted with Lake water that destroys mostly because the fresh water hits the lagoon, changes the salinity of the water and kills everything including the oysters that my friends very lovingly place through out.

 

Here are a few other photos of the event.

 

 

Here is new’s cast.

Important Treasure Coast Events

Here are some events I think you guys will like. If you have anything else just  leave me a message at the bottom of the post  or if we are friends on Facebook or twitter hit me up there.  My email is clenz@mac.com. This if for the Treasure Coast Only.

This month I’m looking for free Christmas meals and food or toys for kids who cannot afford. Contact me if you know of any.

If you have an important meeting or event coming up let me know.

Here are some agencies for Christmas meals and toys.

Save Our Children
Main address is 1611 Avenue D
Fort Pierce, Florida
Dial 772-466-8398
Children under the age of 61 can get one free toy. Any assistance is first come and served. Parents applying in Palm Beach are often single parents as well as families in poverty.

The Salvation Army
Multiple sites operate a Angel Tree Christmas program as well as regional Toys Shops. This allows a member of the community, whether in Palm Beach or St. Lucie County, to buy a gift for a child. The case managers at the Salvation Army will ensure the free present gets to a needy family. They also have Turkeys at Thanksgiving, thrift shops to buy games, and more. Various social services are run.

Palm Beach and Belle Glade Salvation Army centers are at 686-3530.
Martin County families can dial (772) 288-1471.
St. Lucie, there is a site in Fort Pierce (phone (772) 461-2899) and Vero Beach (dial (772) 978-0265)
Another Palm Beach Center is in Boca Raton (phone 561-391-1344) or Lake Worth (dial 561-968-8189).

In The Image of Christ
707 N 7th Street
Fort Pierce, FL 34950
772-461-7788
A St. Lucie County based non-profit. Donations allow it to offer gifts and other assistance at Christmas.

Love and Hope in Action
Main address is 1760 SE Salerno Road
Stuart, FL 34992
For information, call 772-781-7002
This charity focuses it free holiday programs on Stuart County residents.

El Sol Jupiter’s Neighborhood – Resource Center
106 Military Trail
Jupiter, FL 33458
Dial 561-745-9860
There may be stocking stuffers for children, food baskets at Christmas, toys, games, and holiday dinners.

December 2015

Thursday, Dec 17

Taco Shack in Stuart 2nd Anniversary. Taco Shark is a great supporter of a clean river and has yummy food

555 Colorado , Stuart, Florida

11 AM- 9 PM

https://www.facebook.com/events/1665278823757386/

December 19th

Winterfest2-9 PM

Supporting TYKES and TEENS

Activities include:
* Double Feature Movie (‘How the Grinch Stole Christmas’ at approx. 6pm, and our main feature: ‘ELF’ at approx. 7pm)
* Food Trucks
* Snow Machine at The Children’s Museum of the Treasure Coast ($4 admission)
* Sleigh rides
* Other games & activities

Any additional questions:
email ddeakins@martin.fl.us or call 772-221-1430https://www.facebook.com/events/135874833437645/

Dec 19th

You are invited to watch the Democratic Presidential debate with fellow Treasure Coast Bernie Sanders supporters Saturday evening. There is no admission cost but space is limited. To attend, please RSVP here: https://go.berniesanders.com/page/event/detail/4rmz5

When: Saturday, December 19, 7:45- 10 PM.

Where: in the Legends Room at Duffy’s Sports Grill of Stuart South, 6431 SE Federal Hwy- south of Cove Rd.

Directions: Location is well marked on east side of Route 1 in south Stuart. From 95, take rt 76 (Kanner Hwy) about 0.5 miles north to Cove Rd (light), make right and travel east about 2.5 miles to rt. 1. Make right at light and Duffy’s is on other side about 1 mile south.

Dec 21,2016
Martin County DEC.  7 pm at the Martin County Democratic headquarters  at 948 SE Central Pkwy in Stuart.

 

Dec 25th (Please call and check time for dinner)

Mount Zion Church
Address is 4221 28th Avenue
Vero Beach, FL 32967
Dial 772-562-6288
A Christmas Day dinner is served as part of Our Father’s Table Soup Kitchen.

The Source
1015 Commerce Avenue
Vero Beach, Florida 32960
Phone: 772-564-0202
Free Christmas meals are offered for families in poverty. Volunteers serve them and also collect toys. Companionship, counseling, and other support is arranged too.

Monday Dec 28th. Treasure Coast Progressive Alliance http://www.tcprogressivealliance.com/

1101 N. US Hwy 1 #328
Fort Pierce, Fl. 34950
 
Dec 28th
Jonathan Dickinson State Park Christmas Bird Count

Location: Hobe Sound Nature Center

Address: 13640 SE Federal Hwy

Description:

The Hobe Sound Nature Center is seeking volunteers to participate in the annual Jonathan Dickinson State Park Christmas Bird Count on Sunday, December 28th. Experienced and amateur birders are all welcomed.
This count is a part of the National Audubon Society’s Christmas Bird Count, which began over a century ago and is held throughout the western hemisphere. To volunteer for the Jonathan Dickinson Bird Count, contact the Hobe Sound Nature Center at (772) 546-2067 or via our website at www.hobesoundnaturecenter.com.

www.hobesoundnaturecenter.com.

Dec 28th to 30th
Night of Lights McKee Botanical Gardens
Vero Beach
Members free.

January 2016

January 12. Awake the State Treasure Coast. For more information go here.

Awake the State Treasure Coast

January 18,2016

Martin County DEC.  7 pm at the Martin County Democratic headquarters  at 948 SE Central Pkwy in Stuart.

January 30th

Port Salerno Seafood Festival

more info to come

2/2/15

The Blessing of The Fleet Flyer for 2016
“Demand Clean Water to Save Our River”

flyer

Feb 12-20

Martin County Fair

more info to come

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I love you! Now, Change…..

Guest Post:

I love you! Now, Change…..

by Darcy Flierl
The question is not what the other person can do differently, but rather, “What can I do differently?”  Once the honeymoon phase ends and we begin to fully be ourselves- because let’s face it, we can’t help it- we begin to notice all the annoying habits of our once beloved partner.  We begin to ask them:  Please don’t do that, please do this, if you don’t mind- when you do this… and do it my way.  Many requests are of reasonable measure and couple’s need to work together to find those little compromises. I will use the dishwasher for example.  My husband and I moved in together in our late 30’s.  When I say late, I mean I was 39 and he was 40.  We both had already spent a decade each living with our former spouses and we had lived in many situations in which we loaded dishwashers.  He insisted the silverware all be faced up in the rack because he believes it will not be thoroughly cleaned if not.  I want to load it all down with handles up, because I don’t want to stab myself while putting everything away.  This power struggle went on for our first few weeks living together until we reached THE compromise: Knives down, the rest will be placed up.  How did we come to that conclusion?  We talked about what we wanted and why it was important and found a solution that honored both partners’ perspectives.  Okay, so many issues effecting relationships aren’t as simple as “how to load the dishwasher” but they all can come down to the same process.

Unfortunately, sometimes we find ourselves in a relationship with someone who is…. Unreasonable…inflexible……selfish.  It’s no fun to be the individual who is always conceding, compromising, surrendering.  The person whom gives up on everything from how to load the dishwasher, to their friends, careers and for many, even their families, is the person who will do anything to avoid conflict.  This person loses not just the things they value, but in the most extreme cases, they lose themselves.  The Co-Dependent is born.  They no longer exist.  Their purpose moves beyond avoiding conflict, but their purpose becomes the purpose of their partner.  For the person this happens to, they begin to have self-talk that goes like this:  How did this happen?  Things use to be so good.  Isn’t there anything I can do to make them change? Is there anything I can do to make this stop?

As people willing to have relationships, we have an obligation to accept people as they are  OR not.  We do not have the right to love them, welcome them into our lives, build lives with them and then ask them to be different than how they were when we decided to love them.  It is an act of spiritual violence against them and you.  If we cannot accept an individual for all they are, the fair choice is to set them free.  However, most of us lack the courage to be fair.  Instead we say, “I love you, now change”, “become the person I need you to be so I can feel safe, cared for and confident”.  If this injustice has been done to you, you may be faced with a bold decision to take responsibility for you own happiness, stand up to conflict, make choices that will displease your partner, love yourself in the face of adversity.  Love yourself at all costs.  The best case scenario, your partner will see the evil of their ways.  They will ask for patience while they work through their emotions, demands, and fears.  Sometimes, two people stay together yet live separate.  This never seems to allow either individual to find the joy that is available.  In many cases, the partner expected to change, starts to demand the other change too.  And sometimes, the only road to happiness is traveled separate.

“I can’t do this anymore”, “Enough IS Enough”, “I’ve tried and done everything and nothing works”, are things many couples say after the smallest disagreement and to the big stuff, as well.  It’s a natural reaction to have that Fight or Flight reaction when we are in conflict.  Just because one feels that way or says those things from time to time, doesn’t mean it’s time to jump ship.  If your partner wants you to change, maybe accepting their inability to accept you IS the fair and compassionate thing to do.  If you are faced with whether you should stay or whether you should go, here are few questions you might ask yourself to help you make a move in becoming responsible for your own happiness: Are there more bad days than good? Is there emotional, physical or verbal abuse? Is my partners an active addict (the world is full of addicts, the important question is if they using), Are you going to regret leaving?  Will you regret staying? Am I honoring my personal values in the relationship?  You already know, we can only change ourselves.  You can change yourself to save a relationship or you can change the relationship, to be true to yourself.

I wish people were naturally fair.  I wish we always operated with a deep level of self awareness and that we didn’t behave in ways that caused conflict in our relationships.  The sad truth is I’ve made the choice to leave every adult relationship I’ve ever had because either my partner couldn’t accept me or I couldn’t accept them.  Being on our 2nd marriages, My husband and I, operate very different with each other than either of us ever had before.  We love with our hearts, minds and eyes, open.  We love with care, respect, patience, compromise and acceptance.  In just 5 years, some big sacrifices have been made, but they’ve been made by the person making the sacrifice, or compromise, not because it’s been asked of them.   When I think of my husband, I think… I Love You, because I Love YOU and because I’m free to be the totally beautiful, imperfect ME.

Email at darcy.flierl@gmail.com

Darcy Flierl is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, Certified Addictions Professional, and Certified Yoga Teacher currently offering individual and family psychotherapy in Stuart, Florida.  She also enjoys teaching in the Human Services Department as an Adjunct Instructor for Indian River State College and is Consultant for Non Profits along the Treasure Coast.

She has held board positions on for a variety of local and statewide agencies from the Department of Juvenile Justice’s State Advisory Group to CHARACTER COUNTS! and others.  Darcy has received a variety of awards for her community work such as;  Soroptimist’s Rising Star Award, the Community Champion Award from the United Way and for community advocacy from the Tobacco Free Partnership and was a 2013 Nominee as a Woman of Distinction.

Besides working to make Martin County a healthier place, she donates her time doing River Advocacy for the Indian River Lagoon and raising awareness about many issues effecting young people and families.  She treasures her time with her husband, and children attending local events and enjoying Martin County’s recreational opportunities.

For more information about Darcy you can visit her website at:  http://www.darcyflierl.com

Save the Date: Awake the State

Save January 12,2016 for Florida Awake the State. This year the Treasure Coast will have our very  own “Awake the State” group at 4 PM. The Meeting place will be the River Warrior Lodge.

Thank you to Mary Westcott Higgins, candidate for State Representative for District 82 for bringing “Awake the State” to the Treasure Coast.

Facebook Page for Treasure Coast Awake the State

Facebook Page for Awake the State Florida

 

darknesslight

We will rally on the bridge to “Awake the State”  the first day of Legislative Session. We will “Awake the State” with signs addressing our concerns. Then, we will have snacks and drinks at the Lodge.

Awake The State is an organic, grassroots movement of everyday Floridians fighting to protect and restore our middle class.

This is a non partisan event.

From the “Awake the State” website.

“Gov. Rick Scott and his extreme allies in the Legislature have launched an all-out assault on Florida’s middle class. They’ve put our public schools in danger, harmed the quality of health care Floridians receive, and cost our communities thousands their jobs.

Floridians are fed up with their governor and legislative leaders insisting on extreme, regressive policies that hurt hard working Floridians. Enough is enough.

It’s time to Awake The State and urge our state legislators to end the war on our middle class and instead work to protect and restore our middle class by investing in our future.”

We are being assaulted by all sides by the very people who were elected to protect us.

From the Awake the state website

Commonly Asked Questions

What is Awake the State and how did it begin?
Ever since Gov. Scott and legislative leaders announced their plans to cut thousands of jobs, raise taxes on middle class Floridians and make the deepest cuts to education in history, people from all across the state have been looking for a way to voice their opposition.

Progress Florida, Florida Watch Action and America Votes joined together to provide a platform for everyday Floridians to make their voices heard. In 2011, Awake the State started as a Facebook page that quickly grew to thousands strong who organized rallies in cities all across the state of Florida on March 8th, the opening day of the legislative session.

Who is behind it?
Awake the State is made up of Floridians from every walk of life including educators, healthcare workers, police and firefighters, advocates for consumers, middle class families and more.

So please join in so we can all make a difference.

 

 

 

 

In the Hood: Worse than I thought. Rapist on the loose. BOLO

In the Hood: Worse than I thought. Rapist on the loose.

Just last week I wrote this blog post about Motels being bought and turned into drug rehabs.

Not one or two but many. Not for our citizens but for people from out of state. As far as I can tell there is no regulation. This happened

bolo

From the Martin County Sheriff’s office

“CITIZEN’S BOLO, ABSCONDED SEX OFFENDER, PLEASE SHARE

The Martin County Sheriff’s Office is seeking information about 29-year old, John Michael Janaskas. Janaskas is a registered sex offender, who recently relocated from Pennsylvania to a alcohol and drug rehabilitation facility in Jensen Beach.

Over the weekend, representatives from the facility transported Janaskas to the Stuart Walmart, where they dropped him off. No further contact, or forwarding information was taken. Due to federal HIPAA Laws, we cannot disclose the name of the facility. The circumstances surrounding this incident are under investigation.

(I don’t think that’s true. It the patient that is protected not the building.)

Janaska’s crimes include the rape of a child under 14. He is a known drug user, and is considered to be a danger to the public. If you see him, or have information on his whereabouts, you are asked to call the Martin County Sheriff’s Office.

Florida law requires sex offenders and predators to register with the Martin County Sheriff’s Office, so our detectives know, at all times, where they can be located. Janaskas did not register, nor were we notified that Janaskas was dropped off at this public venue, in Martin County without forwarding information, until today.”

This unknown protected HIPAA place took two days to report this. Two days. Two days they have let a known rapist into our community.
Yesterday I was told that nothing could be done because these criminals that are being imported from up north are protected by law. I’m pretty sure not any other state takes rapists into their communities.
Yesterday My friend Victoria found that one company is buying up all these places. They are also the people who are importing criminals from up north. I don’t have all my facts but when I do I’ll put them here UNLESS the news and the police actually do it first. I won’t hold my breath.
Enough is Enough.
You have not protected us from anything. Not the discharges. Not the trains. Not criminals and rapists. nothing.
Our beautiful Stuart and Jensen Beach are being destroyed bit by bit.
It’s time for people to do their jobs.