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.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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What will Martin County Become?

I moved here to Martin County six years ago. I literally was running away from Palm Beach County. The whole place was closing in on me. The people, the traffic, the constant building way, way out to the Everglades, the traffic.

I had driven up here for years for work. I even came up after one of the Hurricanes. I think it was Jeanne. I needed air conditioning. Everyone was so nice.

I drove up Dixie in Rio and always stopped to take a photo of Mrs Peters sign. I took video of the river and the sailboats.

I always felt special driving under the Jensen Arch.

DSC_0074

I loved it because it never changed. It always felt like old Florida to me. A  place where the people who lived here knew how to keep it special.

It must be filled with special people and I was right about that!

Then I moved here. People had kayaks and paddle boards and it reminded me of Boulder, Colorado where people drive around with Kayaks on the roof of their cars. A funky downtown with so much potential. An entire area with so much potential to be funky and fun.

Downtown Stuart with all it fun shops was a great place to tell people to meet me for lunch.

It never changed.

I could live here. I can breath here. People smile here. They are polite. They care about where they live. No one was driving up your rear end and yelling and giving you the finger.

In the last few years we have been polluted, multiple trains are coming and we have 200 sober homes here. People are being court ordered here for treatment. People that can be kicked out any time of their sober home to the streets. People are driving up my rear end and giving the finger when I pull over to let them go.

And don’t even start with the NIMBY stuff. I’ll save that for another day. There is a big difference between being a NIMBY and not wanted polluted gross water and junkies. I think that both go together.

A month ago there was someone shooting up heroin at the corner store. Some guy was upset because he had to pay for his gas with his weed money.

Many motels have been sold and now they are treatment centers. Let’s not talk about this or deal with it. Let’s wait until it’s really bad.

These treatment center are not for our neighbors but for people up north. Come to Florida. You can be a junkie here. Live in Florida. You get nothing. If you are over 65 and need alcohol or drug treatment through Medicare there is one choice and that choice will probably put you on a psychiatric unit with  a general population and not with the program you need.

The people in charge say there is nothing that can be done. That these homes ( and let me remind you that all a sober home is is a place where people live sober. Anything else is a treatment center and must be governed under Florida Law.) We are learning now that many of these places are just scams run by drug addicts or other scam artists to make money.

A scam in Florida can you believe it?

These places are not Switzerland. If there is something illegal going on there has to be a way to investigate. I think people are not thinking hard enough and they are being snowed.

The water I moved here for is unswimable. So many people I know have gotten sick. I cannot take my grandson or my dog there.

There seems to be no answer or any one taking responsibility for what Martin County is becoming. No one.

The junkies keep coming , the dirty water keeps coming and the trains are on the way.

Last year both our Representatives Gayle Harrell and Mary Lynn Magar refused to lift a finger to do the one thing that would have helped us. Millions of dollars are spent that will never make a difference. Someone is getting rich while we are still getting polluted. US.

We have been taxed in Martin County 75 million dollars to water storage so we don’t have to have discharges. Well that didn’t work. We begged for a reservoir with the water going south as mother nature put it in the first place. That didn’t happen.

In the election in 2006 ” The Palm Beach Post, which criticized Harrell for “too obediently” voting the party line and for having “so little clout in Tallahassee that she can’t protect her well-intentioned legislation from harmful amendments.”Ultimately, however, the conservative nature of the district proved too much for Ramos to overcome, and Harrell won re-election over him, scoring 54% of the vote to her opponent’s 46%

In 2008, The Palm Beach Post endorsed Fetterman over Harrell, praising the incumbent for closing a loophole that allowed sexual predators to avoid prosecution, and once again criticizing Harrell for her record in the legislature, where “she wasn’t known for bucking the GOP leadership.”However, Harrell was able to dispatch Fetterman with relative ease, regaining her seat and earning 56% of the vote to Fetterman’s 44%.”

We know she doesn’t buck the leadership. That’s why she refused to help her own constituents. She is also been conferring with people up north about the voluntary legislation regarding sober homes encouraging people to open them up down here as long as they do a voluntary sign up.

She should be asking herself: Why is everyone sending their junkies to Martin County?

She is no friend of ours and certainly not a friend of the water. She just had some kind of event. Invited all the Republicans , left everyone else out so she has no interest in being inclusive and getting anything done. It’s like  all the people that have worked so hard for the water don’t exist.

She should be fighting for us instead of cow-towing to the leadership in Tallahassee.

On Mary Lynn Magars Wikapedia page there is nothing. She said the same thing last year. She couldn’t so anything. I can’t find anything she has actually done. I must be wrong. How can this be true? Someone please tell me she has done something.

I say this because of our ( The train is the train and we have to wait for that one) pollution we are loosing our tourist base. We certainly have more people but those people are going to requires services we just don’t have for our people that live here.

In the last election we picked our clean water candidates. They were bipartisan and they reflected the people who understand the water and have the smarts and the know all to get this stuff done. They certainly would not have destroyed the water of South Florida, continued to allow Salt Water Intrusion, discharges and everything else because of their party and because of their ego.

Last year we painted and sent solidarity fish to multiple representatives and senators. The only one that answered was Thad Altman. Not Gayle, or MaryLynn Magar or even the Democrats answered us.

altman

 

Yesterday, I read an article about eviscerating our ability to get Florida Government Records.  No sunshine. Another bill was filed to override us saying we don’t want fracking. Who’s for  fracking raise your hands! Come on higher!

In the coming year we have some big decisions to make. I hope that one of them is not voting party lines but voting for keeping our Martin County a great place to live.

DSC_0086

We don’t need vindictiveness, stupid games, egos, grandstanding, and more of the same BS. We need to work together or else we’re gonna have a dead river and people shooting up heroin in all our corner stores. We need people that not only understand the issues but understand how to work together with people and are willing to to stand up to get things done.