NAMI encourages enforcement of federal mental health law
This statement was made at the same time as a hearing at the U.S. House of Representatives Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Health.
NAMI leaders wrote a letter to Joe Pitts (R-PA), chair of the Health Subcommittee, and Gene Green (D-TX), a ranking member of the subcommittee.
"While significant progress has been made, people living with mental illness continue to encounter significant barriers in getting necessary mental health services covered in health insurance," Mary Giliberti, CEO of NAMI, said in the letter.
In the 2015 “A Long Road Ahead” report, NAMI studied surveys from 3,000 health care consumers and 84 insurance plans from 15 states. Approximately one-third of the participants in the survey said that insurance companies had denied authorization for substance abuse and mental health care. This means that these kinds of insurance requests are denied twice as often as other medical care requests in the U.S.
HR 2646, the Helping Families in Mental Health Crisis Act, was approved in July 2016. The vote was nearly unanimous. NAMI applauds the subcommittee’s efforts, especially the provisions that are designed for parity enforcement.
"These provisions would be a significant step forward in eliminating discrimination towards mental illness and substance use disorders in health insurance," Giliberti said.
The provisions now need to be implemented to reach their full effect.
Organizations in this story
National Alliance On Mental Illness 320 North Goodman St, Suite 102 Rochester, AL - 14607