What Is Mental Health Parity?

Apr. 08, 2015

After years of NAMI advocates sending letters, making phone calls and visiting their members of Congress mental health parity is law. Now it's time for you to make sure that the law is implemented and that you or your loved one get the treatment and supports you are entitled to.

This infographic breaks down the basics of what mental health parity means, tells you if your plan has to follow this law, what plans have to do if they do have to comply and lets you know what you can do if the plan has to comply and doesn’t. 

(Click to enlarge)

Comments
Perry White
This so called "parity" has backfired. Virtually no psychiatrist will now accept medicare, so instead of increased access to medical care, those with brain disorders that desperately need care are receiving less... Much less. Until Medicare treats mental illness the same way it does other illnesses, it won't get better.
5/4/2015 9:47:05 PM

Linda Riede
It's a shame that medicare & medicaid do not have to comply with mental health parity. My son has used his lifetime reserve medicare coverage for inpatient hospital stay in psychiatic unit. My son is only 37 years old. Is he going to be treated like a second class citizen and put in nursing homes when medication problems occur?
4/30/2015 6:24:09 PM

R. Derel
If health insurance companies have any "options" to not comply with federal mental health parity laws while providing services for other illnesses, then parity is an illusion. Many psychiatrists will not accept any medical insurance due to the loop holes that they must jump through for minimal payment for their services. Hard to believe that we have entered the 21st century!
4/30/2015 2:07:42 PM

carrieb
The unforeseen consequence of MH parity, along with all the ACA provisions to protect people with pre-existing conditions: employers are trying to pre-screen these "expensive" job candidates out of their risk pools, even by illegally using the OMB disability reporting form as part of the employment application. Not that parity or coverage for pre-existing are the wrong things to do, but it looks like they'll only work in a single-payer insurance market.
4/30/2015 8:24:22 AM

Paamela
Activity is key to recovery , not isolation /seclusion let's help people diagnosed with physical / mental disabilities not enable a symptom. We are all ABLE to do something
4/29/2015 7:46:03 PM

Linda Koeppl
Thank you NAMI for fighting for justice.
4/11/2015 12:51:46 PM

Linda Koeppl
Thank you NAMI! SW F really needs to wake up.
4/11/2015 12:50:32 PM

M Sheila Rabaut
The most vulnerable among us receive the least care. Most of the mentally ill are not able to help themselves. It is our responsibility to see that they have basic care. Please care.
4/11/2015 9:24:11 AM

Yvonne
Being mentally ill typically means one is disabled and thus on Medicare. Why does the government not enforce this with Medicare? Absolutely unbelievable, but yet true. Medicare discriminates against the mentally ill.
4/10/2015 11:08:08 PM