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The opioid epidemic kills 78 Americans every day. To address this crisis, President Obama and public health authorities have called for increased use of medication-assisted treatment (MAT). Yet half the nation’s drug courts prohibit MAT, according to a 2014 survey.
Today marks the start of the first annual Reentry Week, a time to think constructively about how best to evolve our criminal justice system to meet the needs of communities and those returning to them with criminal records. We need to ensure that all people with conviction histories are eligible for and receive effective reentry services, not just those with offenses categorized as nonserious, nonsexual, and nonviolent.
News and Highlights
Governor Cuomo Issues Zero Tolerance Policy for Insurers that Fail to Provide Equal Substance Use Coverage
LAC praises the recent announcement by New York Governor Andrew M. Cuomo that his administration has issued guidance to insurers regarding their legal obligations to provide mental health and substance use disorders coverage at parity with medical or surgical care.
United Hospital Fund Awards LAC $60,000 to Create Report on Model Health Policies in the Criminal Justice System
The United Hospital Fund has awarded a $60,000 grant to the Legal Action Center to publish a guide to policies and practices that best engage and retain individuals involved in the criminal justice system in effective health care.
The Legal Action Center today released Health Insurance for Addiction and Mental Health Care: A Guide to the Federal Parity Law. The Guide explains patients’ and providers’ rights to insurance coverage for substance use and mental disorders.
LAC is delighted to announce that Ellen Weber will be rejoining the Center on July 5th as our Vice President for Health Initiatives. Ellen, who worked at the Legal Action Center in both New York and Washington, D.C. from 1985 to 2002, including establishing our D.C. office in 1988, will return to lead the Center’s health care initiatives.