NAMI's Position on Parity
(Summarized from the NAMI Policy Platform)
NAMI supports full parity in both private (individual and employer-based) and public (Medicare, Medicaid, and other government-sponsored) insurance coverage for mental illnesses. Central to an understanding that mental illnesses are both "blameless" and treatable is non-discriminatory coverage for the necessary medical care for these illnesses. One key to unlocking the prisons of these illnesses is research, and research is driven by funding.
The discrimination in access to care is evidenced by limited coverage, punitive co-pays, and restricted access to hospitalization during acute episodes and what one would logically conclude would occur for other untreated or under-treated serious illnesses. That is to say: the outcomes for people with untreated or under-treated illnesses are disastrous and too frequently results in death or permanent disability. To that effect NAMI has been actively pursuing non-discrimination clauses in both federal and state insurance laws.