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Archive for June 29, 2012

U.S. Supreme Court Upholds Affordable Care Act

The Emily Program Foundation applauds the U.S. Supreme Court for upholding the Affordable Care Act (ACA) which includes protections for people who struggle with mental health disorders. Thanks to yesterday’s ruling, Minnesota will continue to move forward with establishing a health insurance exchange that follows Mental Health Parity legislation passed in 2008. The new exchanges will include coverage for mental health care, including eating disorders. The Emily Program Foundation is optimistic that insurance companies’ discrimination against individuals with eating disorders will finally end and that those struggling with eating disorders will get coverage for the treatment they both need and deserve.

Some of the most important provisions of the ACA are:

  • Children and young adults can stay on their parent’s health plan until age 26.
  • The ACA bars insurance companies from denying people coverage because they have a pre-existing condition, including a mental illness.
  • Insurance companies can no longer drop coverage when individuals get sick.
  • Insurance companies cannot impose lifetime limits on mental health coverage.
  • The provisions of Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act that was passed in 2008 must be followed.

The ACA ruling is a victory for all Americans, including the millions who struggle with mental illness. It will mean that all people, regardless of economic status, will have access to health care and be able to access mental health care when they need it most.

Want to get involved?
Join The Emily Program Foundation for a field hearing in support of the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act. This historic rally is a part of many across the country, shining a light on the problems patients face when accessing mental health treatment and celebrating the effects of parity legislation.

Mental Health Parity Field Hearing
When: Monday, July 16
Time: 6:30-8:30 PM
Where: MN Recovery Connection, 253 State St, St. Paul, MN

For more information, visit parityispersonal.org

Parity Field Hearing Coming to St. Paul, July 16

In 2008, Congress passed the The Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equality Act (MHPAEA) which requires health insurance companies to provide the same coverage for the treatment of mental illnesses and substance abuse disorders as is covered for physical health problems – including reasonable co-pays and deductibles. This bill was signed into law by former president George W. Bush. Now, almost four years later, progress on the implementation of the bill has slowed.

Recently, co-authors of MHPAEA and former Congressmen Jim Ramstad and Patrick Kennedy have partnered with politicians, employers, insurance companies, and other healthcare providers to form the Parity Implementation Coalition with the goal to ensure that MHPAEA is fully enforced. In March of this year Former Representatives Ramstad and Kennedy announced the launch of a “Patriots for Parity” tour beginning in the summer of 2012. This tour sets up a series of field hearings across the country over the next year, with hopes of gaining awareness and support for what Kennedy is calling a “civil rights issue.”

Enforcement of the MHPAEA directly affects Emily Program clients and others in the community struggling with mental illness and addiction. The Emily Program Foundation is proud to help host the Parity Implementation Coalition for a field hearing in St. Paul on July 16. Please come out to show your support and help make moves toward the enforcement of equal health coverage for mental illness and substance abuse disorders!

Mental Health Parity Field Hearing
When: Monday, July 16
Time: 6:30-8:30 PM
Where: Minnesota Recovery Connection
253 State Street, St. Paul

For more information visit www.parityispersonal.org or follow @ParityCoalition on Twitter.

Patriots for Parity