DECEMBER 27, 2017
Campaign Encourages People to Report Patient Brokers Who Take Advantage of Those Seeking Treatment For Substance Use Disorders
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced a new public awareness campaign to crack down on “patient brokering,” a practice where brokers collect payments from addiction treatment providers in exchange for referring patients to those programs. The campaign warns New Yorkers about the fraudulent practice and urges that these brokers be reported.
“Vulnerable New Yorkers struggling with addiction are being targeted and falsely promised life-saving treatment services and then are given inadequate and ineffective treatment at outrageous costs,” Governor Cuomo said. “With this campaign, we make it clear that this reprehensible practice will not be tolerated in New York and will help ensure that people receive the appropriate assistance they need to reclaim their lives.”
The campaign was developed through a collaboration between OASAS and the New York Association of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Providers and features posters encouraging people to report patient brokering activities to OASAS. The posters are available for download here and will also be emailed out to treatment providers across the state.
This awareness campaign is one of several initiatives aimed at stopping patient brokering. OASAS recently issued a directive that requires referrals to be delivered by OASAS-certified and -credentialed professionals, who are prohibited from receiving referral fees. New Yorkers can report suspicious activity by calling 1-800-553-5790 or emailing StopTreatmentFraud@oasas.ny.gov.
OASAS Commissioner Arlene González-Sánchez said, “Making the decision to seek treatment is a critical first step for many people with substance use disorders and their families. Their bravery needs to be rewarded with the services that can best help them get on the road to recovery.”
New Yorkers struggling with an addiction, or whose loved ones are struggling, can find help and hope by calling the state’s toll-free, 24-hour, 7-day-a-week HOPEline at 1-877-8-HOPENY (1-877-846-7369) or by texting HOPENY (Short Code 467369).
Available addiction treatment including crisis/detox, inpatient, community residence, or outpatient care can be found using the NYS OASAS Treatment Availability Dashboard at FindAddictionTreatment.ny.gov or through the NYS OASAS website. Visit CombatAddiction.ny.gov to learn more about the warning signs of addiction, review information on how to get help, and access resources on how to facilitate conversations with loved ones and communities about addiction. For tools to use in talking to a young person about preventing alcohol or drug use, visit the State’s Talk2Prevent website.