Why is the mental health parity law important?

One of the many important promises of both the Affordable Care Act and the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act is to ensure that health plans and insurers offer mental health and substance use disorder benefits that are comparable to their coverage for general medical and surgical care.

What is the mental health parity law and why is it important?

The Paul Wellstone and Pete Domenici Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act of 2008 (MHPAEA) is a federal law that generally prevents group health plans and health insurance issuers that provide mental health or substance use disorder (MH/SUD) benefits from imposing less favorable benefit limitations on those …

What do mental health parity laws require?

The Mental Health Parity Act (MHPA) is legislation signed into United States law on September 26, 1996 that requires annual or lifetime dollar limits on mental health benefits to be no lower than any such dollar limits for medical and surgical benefits offered by a group health plan or health insurance issuer offering …

What does mental health parity mean?

Mental health parity describes the equal treatment of mental health conditions and substance use disorders in insurance plans. … However, parity doesn’t mean that you will get good mental health coverage. Comprehensive parity requires equal coverage, not necessarily “good” coverage.

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When was the Mental Health Parity Act enacted?


Does the US have a mental health act?

1946—P.L. 79-487, the National Mental Health Act, authorized the Surgeon General to improve the mental health of U.S. citizens through research into the causes, diagnosis, and treatment of psychiatric disorders.

What does parity law mean?

Parity is the Law

Health insurance plans CANNOT put higher limitations on the number of visits or days of coverage for your behavioral health care than they do for other medical care.

Who enforces Mental Health Parity?

State insurance commissioners are the ones who should be ensuring parity. They are in much stronger positions to enforce the law by ensuring plan compliance with parity standards before plans are sold.

Does Mhpaea apply to Medicare?

MHPAEA does not apply to “stand alone” Medicare Advantage plans or Medicare fee-for-service plans. Church plans. Because of their ERISA exemption, church plans are not affected by the MHPAEA’s ERISA requirements.

What do you mean by parity?

(Entry 1 of 2) 1 : the quality or state of being equal or equivalent Women have fought for parity with men in the workplace. 2a : equivalence of a commodity price expressed in one currency to its price expressed in another The two currencies are approaching parity for the first time in decades.

What does parity mean in medical terms?

Gravidity is defined as the number of times that a woman has been pregnant. Parity is defined as the number of times that she has given birth to a fetus with a gestational age of 24 weeks or more, regardless of whether the child was born alive or was stillborn.

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What did the 1996 parity law accomplish?

The Mental Health Parity Act (MHPA) of 1996 (P.L.104-204) required group health plans with fifty or more employees that offered mental health benefits to apply the same lifetime and annual dollar limits to mental health coverage as those applied to coverage for medical/surgical benefits.

Applied Psychology