Senate Takes First Step Toward Dismantling Mental Health Coverage for Millions
Today, the Senate voted to open debate on health reform by passing a Motion to Proceed by 51-50, with Vice President Pence casting the tie-breaking vote. This paves the way for the Senate to vote on a new health reform bill that will be cobbled together on the floor of the Senate.
What’s at stake? The future of mental health coverage for millions of people who live with mental illness.
Senate proposals to date have included provisions that would devastate Medicaid—a lifeline for people with serious mental illness—as well as take us back to a time when:
- People were denied insurance coverage, charged more or turned down for renewal just because they had a mental health condition;
- People had yearly or lifetime limits on mental health care; and
- Nearly 4 in 10 individual health insurance plans did not cover mental health treatment.
All of the Senate’s health reform proposals have failed NAMI’s simple test: Will Americans have more mental health coverage and better care?
As Congress debates and offers amendments to its bill over the next two days, speak up. If you’ve never contacted your Senators, it’s time to start emailing and/or tweeting. If you regularly contact your representative, don’t stop now. There’s still a chance we can keep this bill from dismantling mental health coverage for millions of Americans.