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Welcome Packet

Your Welcome/Intake Packet

The Emily Program is nationally recognized for our compassionate and personalized approach to eating disorder awareness, treatment, and lifetime recovery. We’re here to help.

Preparing for your first appointment

Welcome to your first steps toward recovery. If you are looking for Welcome Packet information, it’s likely you were directed to this page by our Admissions Team after scheduling your appointment for an intake assessment.

This section includes documents you will need to complete and/or review prior to that appointment. We’ll also let you know what to expect the day of your appointment and answer a few common questions.


Print and complete these forms

Prior to starting at The Emily Program, we need to learn a little more about you. We also want you to learn about policies and practices related to your care. Click next to your state below to download and print all the forms you will need to complete or review prior to your first appointment.


Bring the following with you to your first appointment

  1. Completed paperwork (see above)
  2. Insurance card (for yourself, your child, or the person responsible for payment, i.e. parent or guardian)
  3. Photo ID card (for yourself, your child, or the person responsible for payment, i.e. parent or guardian)

What to expect at your first appointment

Your experience will vary depending on your age (adult or adolescent) and your family dynamic. Below is a general overview of what to expect.

  1. Check in at the front desk to submit completed paperwork and take care of any additional documents that may require your attention and/or signature.
  2. Next, you will complete a self-assessment that consists of several pen and paper questionnaires related to your relationship with food and body image. The self-assessment is not medical and doesn’t require advance preparation.  It helps us to get to know you better and develop a customized treatment plan.
  3. An intake therapist will review results of the questionnaires and then meet with you to discuss what brought you to The Emily Program and what you hope to gain from treatment. Families are included throughout the adolescent intake process. (There will be a waiting period between completion of your self-assessment and your appointment with the therapist.)
  4. At the end of your session with the therapist, you will discuss treatment recommendations and next steps to move forward with care.

Other useful information/tools from The Emily Program

Find us

Check our Locations page for maps to prepare for your visit at our outpatient locations or our 24/7 residential care facilities.

Find out what services your insurance covers

It’s important that you understand the services your insurance will cover. We’ve created the below tool to help guide you through the insurance verification process. This tool includes everything you will need to have ready for the phone call and every question to ask the insurance representative about your coverage.

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Health Insurance FAQs

Health Insurance FAQs

What does ‘covered service’ mean?

If a service is ‘covered’ by your insurance that means it is included in your benefits. Those benefits also determine the portion of out-of-pocket cost associated with the service.

What does it mean if something is excluded from my insurance plan?

If a service is excluded, it is not included in your benefits. You may choose to pursue that service and pay for it yourself.

Why aren’t my benefits a guarantee of payment?

  • Insurance companies will tell you: “Benefit quotes are not a guarantee of payment. Payment is determined at the time a claim is received.”
  • The Emily Program checks coverage for all of our services against your benefits as accurately as possible; however, many client-specific variables will impact your benefits once a claim is sent. These variables include: Diagnosis code, length and frequency of visits, service location and treating provider.

Why can’t The Emily Program tell me exactly how much my treatment will cost?

The total cost of treatment is determined by your benefits at the time services were provided. This includes network status, out-of-pocket payments made year-to-date, insurance pricing for these services, and The Emily Program’s contract with each insurance company. These factors (among many others) affect how a claim is processed and paid by insurance – and with this many variables, it isn’t possible to provide estimated total out-of-pocket costs with accuracy.

What does it mean when a service requires authorization?

Insurance may require additional permissions (authorizations) be obtained by The Emily Program before services can be provided. Authorizations for service generally are obtained by The Emily Program prior to the service being rendered.

  • While the authorization must be approved for the service to be covered, an authorization does not guarantee coverage for a service. If you want to know for certain whether a service is covered, you must talk with your insurance provider.
  • Insurance payment is determined at the time a claim is received and decisions are based off medical necessity.

What is “Coordination of Benefits” and what do I need to do?

“Coordination of Benefits” is an annual requirement for all insurance companies to determine if additional insurance coverage exists. If dual insurance coverage does exist, Coordination of Benefits will determine which plan is primary, and which plan is secondary. If Coordination of Benefits is needed on your plan, all services billed will be denied and you will be responsible for 100% of the amount owed.

  • Call your insurer and inform them if you have additional coverage (e.g. a secondary insurance company.)

What’s the difference between primary and secondary insurance?

When dual-insurance coverage exists, one of the plans identifies as primary, i.e. the ‘first in line’ to pay for your healthcare services. The other will identify as secondary. Services are billed to both insurance plans prior to deductible or co-insurance costs being billed to the client. Call your insurance provider to have Coordination of Benefits set up with both plans prior to claims being processed through insurance (see above).

Can my services be billed differently to accommodate a better benefit level?

The Emily Program submits claims to insurance based on the service rendered, the amount of time for each service, the medical information required (i.e. diagnosis code), and the contract we have with the insurance company. Claims cannot be adjusted to accommodate your benefits.

  • Patient responsibility amounts are determined by your insurance company, not The Emily Program.

For additional questions and information regarding your benefits, please contact the Customer Service Line on the back of your insurance card.

Please call The Emily Program Client Accounts Team with questions regarding the services you have received, clarification on your statement and payment plan options: 1-888-364-5977, ext. 1357.

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Advocating for Insurance

How to advocate for insurance you deserve

Educating your insurer

Remember that your request for treatment is reasonable and that you have been paying for insurance so you and your family would be covered in case of a life-threatening illness. Keep in mind that insurance companies are not the enemy, but they don’t always realize how life-threatening eating disorders are.

Your job is to educate the insurance company so it understands the necessity of treatment. It is always easier to get your insurance company to work with you if you approach their representatives in a non-threatening manner. Try to set your emotions aside and always be civil, polite, and determined (not aggressive). Our Insurance Verification Tool can help you communicate with the insurance company. 

Many people write two letters to their insurance company. The first one is full of emotion and states what you really think and feel. You “let it all out” in this letter, then tear it up and begin the second letter. This letter is polite and respectful, while still conveying your determination and your unwillingness to give up until you get the care that you or your loved one needs.

Know your policy

If you’re running into resistance from your insurer, you’ll need to read your insurance policy and determine what mental health benefits you have. If you have difficulty understanding the document, call the Customer Service number on the back of your insurance card and ask for explanations. Don’t hang up until all of your questions are answered, you understand the answers, and you know the practical consequences of the insurer’s policies and procedures. You must have accurate information as you move forward.

Ask for a case manager if you’re not getting the information you need.

Since treatment at The Emily Program is comprehensive and personalized, be sure you understand which parts of treatment are covered under the medical benefits section of your plan and which are covered under the mental and/or behavioral health section. (The Insurance Verification Tool can help you keep track.)

You also need to understand the insurance company’s “rules.” Call your insurance company and ask them to explain such things as the appeals process, what criteria they use to determine medically necessary treatment, and who makes those decisions.

Know the law

When an insurer denies coverage, they may not be clear about the true conditions, standards, and criteria for their decision. That puts you at an unfair disadvantage during any appeals process. Request a copy of the written criteria and also the names and positions of the people making the decisions. Get contact information for the President/CEO of the company and send copies of all letters to them.

Appeal effectively

Remember to carefully document every phone call, including the name of the person you spoke to, date and time, and what was said or decided. Follow your insurer’s process and be very careful when you submit forms. We find that long delays are often caused by insignificant omissions or mistakes such as leaving out a requested number.

Request that the level of care decision be based on the widely-accepted American Psychological Association guidelines for treating eating disorders. If the request is denied or your insurance company states they use a different set of guidelines, insist that they take full responsibility for the consequences, noting that they are diverging from the guidelines established by qualified experts in the field.

There will be times when you can solve the problem quickly and relatively easily. If you receive a letter denying the requested treatment, call the company. Typically, the person answering the phone cannot reverse the decision, so ask to speak directly to the Medical Director. Ask the Medical Director for a detailed explanation of why the request was denied and what criteria was used to make this decision.

Try to “join” with them by stating that you believe an error was made and that it needs to be reversed. Have your documents at your side so you can explain clearly and effectively why you are right. Again, it is very important that you document everything discussed.

If the simple attempt does not work, you will need to file an appeal. Be sure you understand what the company’s appeal process is and follow it completely. Once you have the information you need from the insurance company, start putting together a packet to send to the review committee and the president of the insurance company. Write a letter that is brief, clear and states your expectations and goals concisely and in understandable terms. Include a brief recap of your story and ask for a response within a defined time period.

Your appeals packet should also include documentation, evidence and facts. Insurance companies may deny or limit coverage after mere “paper reviews,” contradicting the judgment and recommendations of the professionals who have examined and treated you or your family member. Ask your treatment team for documentation supporting your request and the rationale for the recommended treatment. It may also be helpful to include research and other scientific evidence.

To find appropriate information, ask your doctor, psychologist or other professional or look at the website of the Academy for Eating Disorders, a professional organization that publishes the latest research findings.

Send all of this information to the insurance company. Be sure to copy it to the president of the company; your state’s Attorney General and Insurance Commissioner; your local state representatives, U.S. Senators, and Members of Congress; advocacy organizations; your attorney and anyone else you think might be interested. If you have an insurance agent or a human relations representative at your company, copy the material to him or her and ask for assistance.

Keep speaking up

Too many people around the country must battle with their insurers for months and years (sometimes being forced to file lawsuits) to get the coverage they paid for and deserve.

That’s why our last piece of advice is so important: DON’T GIVE UP. Most insurance companies count on people accepting the denial and not following through with the appeals process. We recently heard that when people follow the entire process, they win in 75% of the cases.

We are sorry that you are in this position and we wish there were easier answers, but we trust that over time and with thousands of people like us fighting, we will change the system. If you are interested in joining the national advocacy movement to end discrimination against people with eating disorders, go to Eating Disorders Coalition for Research, Policy & Action website. EDC works in Washington on legislation that will have a nationwide impact.

In Minnesota, you can join the advocacy efforts of WithAll. Remember, you are not alone in this fight!

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What Will Your Insurance Pay?

What will your insurance pay?

Step one: Call your insurance provider

You and your loved ones are the best advocates for your own benefits. The Emily Program will contact your insurance company for a general quote of benefits after scheduling your intake appointment, but to determine how much of the cost of your care you are responsible for, you must contact your insurance provider personally.

Our insurance verification tool will help guide you through this conversation. This tool includes everything you will need to have ready for the phone call to your insurance company to get an estimate of your insurance benefits while you are at The Emily Program.

If you continue to have trouble receiving adequate coverage from your insurance company or if you’re unclear on the terminology, please read our:

If you are unable to get the information you need, another option is to call your insurance company’s ‘Health Advocate’ or ‘Case Manager’ department. These insurance representatives are dedicated to helping you understand and navigate your benefits. (Look for a phone number or other contact information on the back of your insurance card.)

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Current Insurance Providers

Current insurance providers

Note: This list is subject to change. Please use our insurance verification tool and contact your insurance company for coverage details. The Emily Program works with the following insurers, so you receive the highest level of benefits.

Remember to bring your insurance card with you to your appointments.


Minnesota

  • America’s PPO
  • BlueCross BlueShield
  • Group Health Cooperative (GHC)
  • Health Partners
  • Humana/LifeSynch
  • Medica/United Behavioral Health/Optum
  • Medical Assistance
  • Medicare
  • MMSI/Mayo Health Solutions
  • PreferredOne
  • SelectCare
  • South Country Health Alliance
  • UCare

Ohio

  • Aetna
  • Anthem BlueCross BlueShield
  • Apex Health Solutions
  • AultCare
  • Beacon Health Options
  • CareSource
  • Cigna
  • Humana/LifeSynch
  • HealthSmart
  • Molina Healthcare
  • Medical Mutual of Ohio
  • Mutual Health Services
  • Ohio Health/Optima Health
  • OSU Health Plan
  • SummaCare
  • UnitedHealthcare/Optum

Pennsylvania

  • Highmark
  • UPMC

Washington

  • Aetna 
  • Amerigroup
  • Asuris Northwest Health
  • Cigna
  • Community Health Plan of Washington
  • Coordinated Care*
  • First Choice Health Network
  • GAIP
  • Kaiser Permanente
  • Molina Healthcare
  • Premera BlueCross
  • Regence BlueShield
  • United Behavioral Health/United Healthcare/Optum
  • UHC Community Plan*

*In-network coverage in King County


If The Emily Program is not “in-network” under your insurance policy, you may be able to utilize out-of-network benefits. Not all insurance companies cover all services, so be sure to check with your specific insurance policy about coverage.

If your insurance company is not on the list, there may be other options. Coverage may still be available out-of-network or on a case-by-case basis. Call us at 1-888-364-5977, ext. 1612 to start the process.

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What To Expect

What to expect at The Emily Program

When you begin the admissions process, you can expect to speak with a compassionate staff member who truly understands the complexities of eating disorders. We honor your trust in us and we keep everything that you share with us confidential.

Take the first steps toward your recovery

Step 1: Speak with an admissions specialist

If you’ve completed an online request to start the process of scheduling an eating disorder assessment, then we’ll be contacting you soon. Otherwise, please call us at 1-888-364-5977 to speak with an admissions specialist. Your admissions specialist will talk with you about what you (or your child) are experiencing, collect some information (name, contact info, insurance information), answer questions, and schedule a phone intake.

Step 2: Complete a phone intake and make a plan

Next, your Phone Intake Therapist/Nurse will call to complete your phone intake at the scheduled time. Following the phone intake, your Clinical Admissions Specialist will make a level of care recommendation, help set up any necessary medical assessments, and schedule a program start date. 

Step 3: Start programming

On your first day, you will receive an expanded intake assessment, participate in orientation, and then begin treatment.

Note: In line with recommendations from the CDC and State Departments of Health, everyone entering our facilities will be required to wear a mask. We ask that you bring a cloth mask from home to wear in our outpatient facilities or for your first 14 days of residential treatment (you can choose whether to wear one after that). If you do not have one, a washable cloth mask will be provided. Masks will not be required while eating, sleeping, showering, or when social distancing is possible.

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