Playing around with food starts when we are introduced to strained peaches and never ends. That's why there is the Freshman 15 pounds, the porking-up after not making partner at The Firm, losing too much weight as a form of magical thinking, and wasting trillions of dollars in further magical thinking about getting our eating habits under control. If you know anyone without an eating disorder, I'd love to interview that person for this blog.
Clearly in agreeing to treat eating disorders like mental illness, Aetna is opening Pandora's Box. Today in the WALL STREET JOURNAL Law Blog, Dan Slater reports:
"In a recent settlement with some 100 New Jersey policyholders, Aetna has agreed to pay $250,000 in reimbursements to those whose claims were denied and to expand coverage for anorexia and bulimia."
The inpatient food-disorder treatment industry will surge. So will class-action lawsuits contending some harm from food, from the healthcare providers, or even from the insurance agencies. In America, food is the most commonly abused substance. It always was and always will be. Thanks to Aetna's caving, now determined people can obtain the attention they crave, multiple 28-day stays in a food rehab [I hear the food isn't bad], life-long therapy, and something deemed socially acceptable to obsesses over.