A Long Road Ahead

Achieving True Parity in Mental Health and Substance Use Care
 


For too long, people who need mental health and substance use care have been subjected to pervasive discrimination in health insurance. Health plans for people with pre-existing mental illness, if they included mental health benefits at all, have historically been more expensive, with limited benefits and significant administrative hurdles to obtaining care.

Achieving true equity in accessing mental health and substance use disorder care requires vigilant attention by advocates and public agencies responsible for enforcement. This report describes a survey conducted by NAMI to assess the experiences of people living with mental illness and their families with private health insurance.

The findings of the survey are supplemented with an analysis of 84 health plans in the top 15 states by projected 2014 exchange enrollment. Our findings reveal that while progress is being made in law, we have a long way to go to achieve true parity in mental health and substance use care.

What is Mental Health Parity?

Learn more about mental health insurance parity, which plans need to follow the parity requirements and what you can do if your plan does not follow parity. Download the Insurance Parity Infographic.