• Report: #714301

Complaint Review: Wisconsin Community Mental Health Counseling Centers

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  • Submitted: Tue, April 05, 2011
  • Updated: Thu, November 08, 2012

  • Reported By: concernedcitizen12 — Milwaukee Wisconsin United States of America
Wisconsin Community Mental Health Counseling Centers
10500 N Pt Washington Rd Mequon, Wisconsin United States of America

Wisconsin Community Mental Health Counseling Centers WCMHCC takes advantage of your problems for their financial gains Mequon, Wisconsin

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: Another Concerned Professional

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: It's about time..

*Author of original report: Reponse to Rebuttal

*REBUTTAL Owner of company: WCMHCC's Record Speaks for Itself

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Roughly a year ago I started going to WCMHCC for help in treating my dependence on painkillers. Places like this specialize in prescribing a certain kind of medicine for opoid addiction called Suboxone, which helps curb withdrawl effects and cravings. Not just any doctor can prescribe this medication, you must be an addiction specialist, so it can be extremely difficult to find a doctor who treats patients with dependance issues.

I was referred there by the Suboxone website, and upon calling them, it seemed as if they genuinely cared about my recovery and wanted to help. I gave them my insurance info and they told me they could see me the next day. Nothing seemed amiss after the first appointment, but it's what has followed that has been extremely discomforting.

This places charges rediculous amounts of money for their "care," which includes frequent drug testing (which is normal), psychiatric counseling every two weeks, and a doctors visit to get the medicine as required. Because they know their patients are addicts and will pretty much do whatever it takes to get better, they insist on seeing you as often as possible. When you can't accomodate to their schedule, they question your dedication or even accuse you of relapsing and demand that you make another appointment ASAP.

On at least one instance, I had a death in the family and needed to switch my appointment. They had made me aware of their 24-hour cancellation policy, which is normal at any doctor. I called early in the morning the day before my appointment and they charged me $150 for not giving 24 hour notice, even though it was actually 30 hours notice. Their definition of 24-hour is obviously different from the rest of the worlds, and it took me over six months for them to eventually drop the charge.

On top of that, their billing department is extremely shady. On numerous occasions I have received bills late and in the past month, I have changed health insurance companies. For almost a month, they were billing the wrong insurance company, even though I had given them my new information and made it clear that I had switched. When they weren't receiving payments, they threatened to kick me out of the program despite the fact that it was their error, not mine. Everytime I've gone in for an appoitment a different dollar amount has been on my bill, which leads me to believe that they are either cooking the books or have no idea how to perform simple accounting tasks.

Another time I had some of my medication stolen from a local YMCA, and I called in to see if they would prescribe me a few extra pills to hold me over until my next appointment. They did it, but weeks later, I discovered a $50 charge for having the doctor call it in. Not once was this explained to me by anyone, and I am currently fighting the charge as I type this.

All this place cares about is money, and they prey on those in need because they know that you want to get better and will theoretically do "whatever it takes" to get better. Do not send your child there or yourself, because you'll end up having to take out a second mortgage in order to pay for everything. WCMHCC takes advantage of you when you're at your weakest point and takes you for all your worth, and they have no results to prove that they actually work.

Believe me when I say that there is nothing worse than opiate addiction, but this has honestly been almost a bigger nightmare. I cannot stress enough that you need to stay away from these people; they don't care about your well-being, they only care about getting paid, and they are no different from the drug pushing doctors that they claim to despise. I haven't touched opiates in over a year, but that has absolutely nothing to do with their care. I knew I wanted to quit, but needed the assistance of medication in order to help me stop. That's all I ever needed, but this place makes sure you drop at least $300 per appointment before you even get to see the doctor.

Bottom line, there are better places to get treatment than WCMHCC. Do not trust your recovery with them, they are corrupt and care little about their patients.

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 04/05/2011 05:53 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/Wisconsin-Community-Mental-Health-Counseling-Centers/Mequon-Wisconsin-53092/Wisconsin-Community-Mental-Health-Counseling-Centers-WCMHCC-takes-advantage-of-your-proble-714301. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

Ripoff Report has an exclusive license to this report. It may not be copied without the written permission of Ripoff Report.

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REBUTTALS & REPLIES:
1Author 2Consumer 1Employee/Owner
Updates & Rebuttals

#1 UPDATE EX-employee responds

Another Concerned Professional

AUTHOR: concerned professional - ()

I was a therapist at WCMHCC for nearly 18 months and was shocked when I began learning about the unethical practices the owner engages in.  Stay away from this clinic!!!!!!! 
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#2 UPDATE EX-employee responds

It's about time..

AUTHOR: Concerned Therapist - (United States of America)

Concerned Citizen,

You are correct. This establisment does not have the best ethical practices for the counseling profession. They are taking advantage of many people that don't ask about their rights upon entering the therapuetic relationship. Furthermore, entering therapy for a problem, whether mental health, drug dependency or whatever should not be compounded with another new issue... financial predatory practices! As counseling professionals, we are to follow ethical guidelines to ensure that we Do No Harm... For places that operate like WCMHCC, it is going to take people like yourself to speak up and report these kinds of issues. I encourage you to continue to advacate for the right causes. Congrats on your continued path to recovery.

Concerned Therapist. 
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#3 Author of original report

Reponse to Rebuttal

AUTHOR: concernedcitizen12 - (USA)

Wow, where do I even begin? I'm so glad I signed up to receive e-mail alerts when someone posts a response, because WCMHCC's "rebuttal" is the best laugh I've had all day.

Calling my report "propaganda?" Sounds like you need a history lesson as to the true meaning of propaganda. Why don't you ask someone in North Korea if they'd consider that propaganda? The real propaganda is you trying to make a big deal about Ripoff Report having their website hosted in Turkey, as if that's a big deal.

Newsflash, many places host their site overseas. Not that big of a deal.

Obviously I don't receive treatment at WCMHCC anymore. I now reside in Minnesota where I've received proper treatment by addiction professionals who actually care about your well-being, not profits. I know, surprising right?

As for being a "disgruntled former patient," yes, I am that, but I'm also smart enough to realize that you guys are way more concerned with getting paid than providing care. I've told all my doctors about your $50 call-in policy and they actually told me that you should lose your medical license for something that ridiculous.  One of them called it, "pure greed." Not my words, a 35-year medical professional's words.

If there's one thing I've learned at my new treatment facility, it's that people who are treated like normal people will recover faster and feel respected. During my time at WCMHCC, I felt like a criminal who at any minute could be sent into solitary confinement for looking at an employee the wrong way.

That being said, there are good people at WCMHCC, just not many. I was actually getting on pretty good terms with my therapist there, until the absolute greed set in. The front desk people are decent, but they're the ones who harass patients about making payments. The worst part is that they're merely a voice for the "owners" of this place, who cower in the back and make the receptionists do their dirty work.

Simply disgusting. I cannot tell you how much it makes me sick to think about having spent even 1 cent there. 

Oh, and one other thing. You think I'm the only one writing online about your place? Wrong. I know of at least five to six other people that I was in treatment with who are planning on doing the same thing, and ironically enough, I know one of them has considered bringing his claims to the BBB. 

You say that your record "speaks for itself," and I must say you're right, it does. And sadly, that "record" sucks. I welcome another laughable response from ya'll. 
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#4 REBUTTAL Owner of company

WCMHCC's Record Speaks for Itself

AUTHOR: wcmhcc - (USA)

April 27, 2011
 
Complaint Rebuttal: WCMHCC, Report No.: 714301
 
 
This rebuttal is written on behalf of the staff members at the Wisconsin Community Mental Health Counseling Centers, Inc. At Wisconsin Community Mental Health Counseling Centers, Inc., we specialize in providing preventive and proactive mental health care as well as substance abuse treatment for opiate dependence.

As part of the outpatient care for opiate dependence, we have developed the Supervised Medication Assisted Recovery and Treatment Program (S.M.A.R.T.) The purpose of the S.M.A.R.T. Program is to make recovery and treatment comfortable for the patient. Addiction experts focus all attention on the patients medical and psychosocial needs. As part of this program, staff physicians prescribe Buprenorphrine (Suboxone/Subutex) to patients to help decrease cravings and relieve withdrawal symptoms. This helps by allowing the patient to remain in treatment and gain control over their dependence without having the distraction of cravings and the fear of withdrawal.

As part of the S.M.A.R.T. Program, it is mandatory for patients to submit to random urine screening at least twice per month, however patients are subject to more frequent urine screenings if they have recently relapsed or when there is a scheduled appointment with one of the staff physicians. 

Once a patient makes initial contact with the clinic and completes the initial assessment, the information obtained is relayed to the patients possible therapist. As part of the initial assessment, an intake coordinator obtains all necessary insurance information from the patient, including the name of the insurance carrier, telephone number, member id and group id. The intake coordinator then contacts the insurance company and obtains both in and out of network plan benefits. During the initial assessment an intake coordinator will advise new patients that insurance is never a guarantee of payment, and as the providers office, we will bill the insurance company as a courtesy to our patients. Ultimately if insurance does not cover, the patient is responsible for full payment at the time of service.

Prior to the patient meeting with his or her therapist for the initial consultation, the patient must complete the initial clinic paperwork. As part of the paperwork, all new patients sign a fee agreement, which states that the patient is financially responsible for all services rendered at Wisconsin Community Mental Health Counseling Center, Inc and he or she understands that payment is due at the time of appointment.

The fee agreement also states that as the patient, he or she is fully responsible for any late cancel or no show appointments. If a late cancel or a no show should occur, the patient may be charged a full session fee. As the policy stands, if the patient cancels or reschedules an appointment, he or she must notify the clinic at least 24 hours in advance to avoid the possible charge.

If a patient has to have a prescription called into a pharmacy, the patient is made aware of the medication administration fee. All patients are subject to this administration fee. This fee not only applies to Suboxone clients, but to all patients who are seen at the clinic for medication management. Once a patient places a call into the clinic to have a prescription filled over the phone, an intake coordinator will take down the appropriate information and informs the patient of this fee.

The goal at Wisconsin Community Mental Health Counseling Centers, Inc is to provide our patients with the utmost support to increase their success rate. It is the belief of all staff members at Wisconsin Community Mental Health Counseling Centers, Inc that for a patient to work towards a successful recovery, their treatment must address all areas of their personnel, physical, emotional and spiritual life.

We want to assure all of those who may have come across this initial outrageous accusation, that we at WCMHCC are in the business to help clients with mental health issues as well as drug addiction/dependence. With that being said, we are a Private Practice and like any private practice, we are able to provide the high quality services that we do by collecting the fees agreed upon at the beginning of any and every treatment service. The individual who drafted this slandering piece of propaganda, like all of our patients, signed a contract for service AS WELL AS a fee agreement, outlining exactly what they would be charged for each appointment.  This client was also made explicitly aware of our late cancellation/no show fees and signed the documents stating they understood what was required of them.

The only individuals who would accuse our billing department of being, shady, are the individuals, like this one, who do not abide by their treatment plan and do not provide payment for services they receive. Our in-house billing department is well respected and operates under the strictest of ethical and moral guidelines.

After reading this completely fabricated essay, we are disgusted that this individual would try to steer addicts away from the successful treatment that we are providing to hundreds of current patients. It is easy to recognize that the author is a disgruntled former patient who was terminated from our program due to non-compliance and lack of dedication. It is unfortunate that they are refusing to recognize the success of our program and the positive changes it has had on their life. I wish this individual the best of luck in their future recovery and thank them for this opportunity to dispel these slanderous rumors.

More importantly, we have attempted to contact the owners of Rip-Off. In our search we discovered that this organization based in Arizona actually has their website hosted in the Country of Turkey, more specifically on a Turkish Military Installation. Quite suspicious and clearly put there to keep good citizens from trying to resolve disputes. On top of that Rip-Off has a dispute resolution firm available at a cost of at least $2,000.00 dollars. So who is kidding whom? We plan on taking appropriate legal action once the owners can be found.  

Finally, we realize and are aware of the power of the Global World Wide Web. Some organizations abuse the freedom the internet provides to all of us. The internet is still used by some for financial gain without any sort of due diligence or due process. We invite this organization to act like any Better Business Bureau that has checks and balances in place to resolve these kinds of disputes (especially from heroin addicts) in a fair and honest way.   
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