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Question
Posted by: Alone | 2009-09-08

Need help with depression

Hi. I' m depressed and i' m taking medication. I should be seeing somebody as well, but my medical aid was depleted it think in Feb. My current shrink charge R500 per hour session. I can' t afford this. I also have no friends to talk to. Any ideas? I think i' m currently too broke to afford to be depressed. I even have to pay for my pills each month out of my own pocket, my medical aid don' t think depression is a chronic illness. Help please???

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

Gosh, how did you deplete this year's medical aid benefits in 2 months ? Have you discussed the cost issue with your current shrink ? Explore the option of seeing someone at your nearest mamnjor medical school or major state hospital's psych clinic, where you could probably also get your drugs at a better cost.
It is indeed sad that some medical aids seem to choose to ignore the undeniable fact that Depression is often a chronic illness, and don't provide sufficient benefits to cover its proper treatment, while covering the costs of diseases people get by their own choice of behaviour

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

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Our users say:
Posted by: CC | 2009-09-09

I know the loneliness. What meds are you on? If you' re on Cipralex, their is a site that you can join. Cipralex users share their problems, stories and support each other. I found it helpful and it also helped me come to terms with the fact that I was depressed. I didn' t even ant to take meds.

Good luck. I also wouldn' t recommend Discovery. My friend is on chemo &  Discovery is giving him so much of problems, refusing to pay for chemo regimes that work for him, making him wait weeks for approval, etc.

Good luck!

Reply to CC
Posted by: C | 2009-09-09

Try a natural anti-depressant: physical exercise. Join a dance class or anything that involves physical activity and, in the process, you will also make friends.

Reply to C
Posted by: Liza | 2009-09-08

It might be feasible to move to a more expensive medical aid/medical aid plan to ensure that your depression is covered as a chronic condition. I' m with Discovery, and they do cover depression as a chronic condition on their Classic comprehensive and more expensive plans. There are other medical aids that also cover an extended list to the regular Prescribed minimum benefits. Although I wouldn' t really recommend Discovery. Their service levels are absolutely shocking nowadays.

Reply to Liza
Posted by: Been there | 2009-09-08

Hi if you speak to your medical aid, they might advise you on the matter. Certain medical schemes do consider depression as a chronic illness, depending on what level of the scheme you belong to. Otherwise, just ask advice. You have to start somewhere (you did by posting here), so go on to the next step and ask them. It is important that one do not give up hope. Another thing to try is having a look at food and depression. Do a search on the net. There are some foods that help alleviating depression. It might not be a full answer, but give it a try. Any positive action you take yourself is a step in the right direction towards healing. All the best

Reply to Been there

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