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Chiropractic Care, Acupuncture Now Covered By Medicaid In Missouri

Missouri will now cover more non-opioid treatment options for Medicaid recipients who suffer from chronic pain as part of an effort to prevent substance abuse, and save the state money.

Earlier this week, the Missouri Department of Social Services’ MO HealthNet Division made the decision to allow chiropractic care and acupuncture to be covered by Medicaid.

The department’s Todd Richardson praised the decision.

This is an exciting and important step forward in Missouri’s efforts to diminish the use of opioids and to provide relief to those who suffer chronic pain without the risks associated with an opiate. MO HealthNet providers simply need more options to effectively treat chronic pain and expanding treatment options to include physical therapy, cognitive-behavioral therapy, chiropractic therapy, non-opioid medication therapy, and acupuncture will help optimize health outcomes and ultimately enable Missourians to resume a normal, active family and work life.

Combating substance use in Missouri families is a goal for the Department of Social Services and the addition of alternative and complementary therapies for the treatment of chronic pain is a key initiative to help achieve that goal.
“Chronic pain can be debilitating and can seriously impact a Missourian’s physical and mental wellbeing as well as their ability to function and be productive,” said Steve Corsi, Psy.D., Director, Missouri Department of Social Services. “I am proud MO HealthNet has achieved this goal and the Department is making a very concerted effort to quickly educate providers on the availability of these alternative therapy treatment options to bring crucial relief to thousands who suffer from chronic pain.”

The addition of these new covered services will actually reduce costs by lowering prescription drug costs, eliminating emergency room visits, and avoiding the need for other medical services.

“We are determined to make Missouri a best in class Medicaid program that provides access to healthcare for Missouri’s most vulnerable in a way that is financially sustainable for our state. This is a step in the right direction,” said Richardson. “MO HealthNet is actively pursuing treatment options to optimize health care outcomes, keep Missourians safe, and save taxpayer dollars.”

Officials believe the alternatives could save the state $9 million a year.

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