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As Americans ring in the New Year tonight, they will usher in a new era of health coverage for those suffering from severe mental illnesses. The Mental Health Parity Act of 1996 will take effect at the stroke of midnight, allowing millions of Americans to break free from decades of unfair discrimination.
Thanks to a new generation of atypical antipsychotic drug therapies, millions of Americans suffering from severe brain disorders can lead more independent lives today without the devastating physical side effects of older medications, reports the fall issue of The Decade of the Brain, a quarterly science-based publication of the National Alliance for the Mentally Ill (NAMI).
As expected, the regulations implementing the federal Mental Health Parity Act of 1996 were jointly issued by the Departments of Health and Human Services, Labor and Treasury in today’s Federal Register.
The National Alliance for the Mentally Ill (NAMI) today lauded the Clinton Administration for standing behind a landmark law that ends at least some health insurance discrimination against millions of Americans with severe mental illnesses. The White House is expected to release a formal decision sometime next week.
Many of the 18 million Americans who live with severe depression suffer in silence because of the stigma attached to mental illness. That silence is broken in "Dead Blue: Surviving Depression," a new HBO documentary that chronicles the lives of three people suffering from depression and their families.
The American Institute of Philanthropy (AIP), the nation's leading charity watchdog, awarded the National Alliance for the Mentally Ill (NAMI) an A-plus rating for its cost-effective charitable spending and fundraising practices. NAMI was one of only 10 groups throughout the country that received an A-plus rating out of a field of 340 nonprofit organizations.
Recent conferences such as the third national Primary Care/Behavioral Healthcare Summit and the Medicaid Working Group's Managed Care and Disability: Consumer Needs and Quality Measures explored ways that primary care health plans can include behavioral health care services.
President Clinton today signed legislation designed to reform the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) drug approval process. In addition to overhauling the drug approval process, the new law also renews the Prescription Drug User Fee Act (PDUFA), a popular law that assesses fees on pharmaceutical companies to hire additional FDA staff in order to more rapidly review their products' safety and efficacy.
NAMI views the President’s proposed managed care Consumer Bill of Rights and Responsibilities released today as a necessary first step, but believes ongoing work is needed to assure quality and accountability for individuals with severe mental illnesses and their families.
Discrimination against children with severe mental illnesses may persist under the federal government’s new health insurance plan for children, suggests a study released today that examines existing mental health coverage in 16 states.