Does Health Insurance Cover CBD Oil?
As research continues to provide evidence of CBD oil’s many health benefits, more and more people are turning to this natural wonder for help. CBD oil has been shown to help relieve anxiety, improve symptoms of depression, and alleviate pain.
While many scientific studies have backed up the claims about the benefits of CBD oil, and many people have already started to use it, the relatively high prices of CBD oil remain a concern. Many consumers opt for cheaper products only to find they yield ineffective results, as they contain dosages of the cannabidiol compound that are insufficient to produce the potential health benefits.
Due to the high price tag of CBD oil, patients are often asking their doctors if their health insurance plans will cover the cost. In this post, we explore whether or not health insurance programs will ever cover CBD oil as well as look at the options that are currently available.
Will Health Insurance Agencies Pay for CBD Oil?
It is not only the average consumer who is becoming more aware of the health-related properties of CBD oil. Many physicians have begun to notice as well, seeing their patient’s symptoms improve for various ailments. These products have scientific research behind the claims of their medicinal properties and yield almost no side effects in a majority of patients.
As a result, some doctors are starting to recommend CBD oil as a treatment—often in combination with other conventional medications. And they’re being asked by their patients if it’s covered by health insurance.
At the present time, the answer to this question is unfortunately no. There are no health insurance companies in the United States that will cover CBD oil or even medicinal marijuana, even if it’s prescribed by a doctor. Health insurance will not cover the costs even when a patient hands over a prescription at a dispensary.
Why Won’t Health Insurance Companies Cover the Cost of CBD Oil?
Even though there is plenty of evidence regarding the medicinal uses for CBD oil—and even though doctors are already prescribing these oils to their patients—health insurance plans do not offer to cover the costs. This brings up the question of why, especially when there are a significant number of other pharmaceutical drugs that are covered— sometimes with similarly high or even higher price tags.
There are two primary obstacles preventing health insurance companies from offering to cover CBD oil or similar treatment options such as medicinal marijuana.
The first obstacle is the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). When a new drug is released on the market, it must first be approved by the FDA before doctors can legally prescribe it to their patients.
The FDA focuses its attention on pharmaceutical products and has little interest in products that are primarily made from natural sources—so CBD products don’t get approved and, in turn, health insurance companies are not obligated to cover them. According to state laws, these agencies are only required to provide coverage for drugs that are FDA approved.
So far the FDA has approved only one drug containing CBD, for a rare form of epilepsy.
The other obstacle to health insurance coverage for CBD oil is because it’s classified as a Schedule 1 controlled substance. This classification typically applies to marijuana, but laws in the U.S. state that any product containing the cannabidiol compounds found in marijuana must also fall under the classification.
Cannabidiol is an active chemical that is found in both hemp and marijuana plants. Even though hemp is legal in most states—and is the plant used to produce CBD oils—the fact that it contains the same cannabidiol compounds as marijuana is why the Schedule 1 classification remains in place.
What Options Are There for Patients?
At the moment, patients interested in obtaining CBD oil for its medicinal properties must pay for it out of their own pockets. There is currently no financial assistance for a patient wanting to obtain CBD oil for any health reason—even with a doctor’s prescription.
For this reason, consumers are advised to be cautious when buying CBD oil. Quality products can reach more than $100 a bottle, and there have been reports that some brands have advertised CBD products that had little to no actual cannabidiol compounds in the solution.
Patients seeking CBD products need to make sure they’re purchasing them from a reputable company. It is critical that you do your research and examine the authenticity of the brand.
CBD Oil and Health Insurance: What the Future May Hold
Even though health insurance companies don’t currently cover the cost of CBD oil, this doesn’t mean there will never be such coverage.
With a rapidly growing body of scientific research showing just how powerful CBD oil is for treating depression, anxiety, pain, inflammation, acne, and many other conditions in the human body, the FDA certainly could consider reviewing these products in the future.
Additionally, there could also be changes to the scheduling classification of the compound—ultimately leading to health insurance companies embracing CBD oil’s potential health benefits for patients.
The medicinal properties of CBD oil have made these products exceptionally popular. Doctors are starting to prescribe these oils to their patients as a safer way to manage certain symptoms and diseases. Even though scientific research is backing up the claims about these oils, health insurance companies aren’t ready to help patients pay for them. But we could see companies come around to providing such coverage to patients in the future.
As research continues to show evidence of many CBD's health benefits, many people are wondering if it's covered by insurance. The answer is usually "no."
Does Insurance Cover CBD Oil?
Ah, insurance–the aspect of adult life that can both break our backs and help us fix them. Insurance can, at times, seem like an overwhelming, convoluted mess when you’re simply trying to find security in your health. Depending on the insurance you’re covered by and your familiarity with it, you’ll know that some things are taken care of while others are left outstanding (and fall to your responsibility).
CBD oil is one of them. CBD oil, since its emergence as a separate entity than the psychoactive THC of the cannabis plant, seems to be limitless. There is a growing laundry list of health benefits it contributes to and it’s moving its way into recreational popularity as well.
Some prefer to use it as an oil, some prefer to vape it, others like to eat it in candy. Regardless of your preferred consumption, at base-level CBD is an extracted ingredient that, at its most basic, is used medicinally. But does insurance cover CBD oil?
Using CBD as Medicine
The movement to legalize marijuana was just the tipping point. It is still federally classified as a Schedule I drug, but considering more than half of the country has moved to be on board with using it medicinally, it’s likely to change. As of 2018, hemp is legal again in the United States thanks to the 2018 Farm Bill. Hemp is known for many healing qualities, and it’s teeming with CBD and has only trace amounts of THC.
Cannabis was criminalized due to a nation in fearful hysterics, aka Reefer Madness, and allowed for cigarettes and booze to take over the scene. Research into the plant became scant, and tobacco reigned supreme.
Thanks to the Father of Marijuana, we now know that the dangers associated with cannabis are a far cry from those of nicotine-packed cigarettes. To go a step further, his research shed light on the fact that THC is different than CBD. Even people who came to love cannabis for its euphoric high have found that their lives can be just as happy and healthy with a little CBD instead.
A quick YouTube search turns up hundreds of accounts of miraculous results from people using CBD for a range of disabilities and illnesses. In some cases, CBD appears to calm the shaking hands of people living with Parkinson’s Disease. Others find that applying it directly to the skin has impressive effects against arthritis.
Just as CBD has been able to assist the elderly community in dealing with the aches and pains associated with aging, the younger generation is also bearing witness to its power. The first-ever FDA-approved drug was created in response to Lennox-Gastaut and Dravet’s Syndrome, childhood diseases associated with frequent, severe seizures. Working along with the endocannabinoid system, the CBD is able to relax the receptors in the brain that lead to seizures and has effectively plummeted their daily severity and frequency. This drug can be used in children as young as 2 years old.
Aside from the severe debilitating diseases that CBD works to improve, it’s become popular across the board, bridging all age gaps for its relaxation effects. People who suffer from anxiety and depression are looking increasingly to CBD to help calm nervous tension. Some use it as a sleep aid. Mothers have been trying CBD in place of pharmaceutical medicine for behavioral issues like ADHD. With all these benefits, it’s no wonder people are asking, “Does insurance cover CBD oil?”
Does Insurance Cover CBD Oil?
Taking the high out of cannabis has given the plant an attractive makeover, and the medicinal community is gradually coming to terms with the nice new kid on the block. But does insurance cover CBD oil?
Cannabis and all cannabis-related products are still listed on the pesky list of Schedule I drugs, along with substances like heroin, ecstasy, and meth. While the others may wreak havoc and make a mess of things, cannabis just wants everyone to get along and to be able to enjoy life. With the 2018 Farm Bill’s legalization of hemp, the government is beginning to recognize the plant’s benefits and lack of harmful qualities.
The medical community is also beginning to recognize CBD’s benefits. But before insurance starts paying for it, the medical and insurance industry need to figure out how to make money from it. Big pharma has reigned supreme for far too long just to be put in the back seat by the cool new guy.
CBD oil can be found in some drug stores, but it will cost you out of pocket. Depending on who your doctor is, you’re unlikely to get prescribed CBD in the US anytime soon. If they’re not prescribing it, insurance isn’t covering it. Unfortunately, that’s the answer right now to the question, “does insurance cover CBD oil?”
Again, to take note from our proverbial nice new guy on the block, things are looking up. Already the UK has seen the opportunity for doctor-prescribed cannabis. Landmark moments like these are inspiring for Western culture and the rise of cannabis from the ashes of Reefer Madness seems impending.
Your doctor may be on board for you to use CBD oil. Depending on your level of need, they may even offer some suggestions for a method, timing, or dosage. Doctors in legal states can also write a certificate for you to purchase medical marijuana, including high CBD strains. As of right now that’s as far as the healthcare system has dipped into sponsoring CBD oil.
Insurance won’t cover your CBD oil purchase, but that’s not to say it isn’t worth the personal investment. All things considered, CBD can be somewhat reasonably priced, especially compared to many pharmaceutical drugs, even after insurance covers their portion.
CBD oil has been heralded for its many benefits. But it is rather pricey. Does insurance cover CBD oil? We answer this question (and more) in this article.