New Parity Guide Explains Right to Health Insurance Coverage for Addiction & Mental Health Care


June 29, 2016—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. It answers question such as:

  • My health insurer denied me inpatient addiction treatment. Now what?
  • My health insurer will only approve 2 days of residential addiction treatment at a time. What can I do?
  • My health insurer’s network has no doctors who prescribe Suboxone. What are my rights?
  • My health insurer says my psychologist visits are not medically necessary. Is there anything I can do?

A federal law forbids health insurers from discriminating against people with substance use or mental disorders. Health Insurance for Addiction & Mental Health Care: A Guide to the Federal Parity Law explains patients’ and providers’ rights care under this law, the Paul Wellstone and Pete Domenici Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act, or “federal parity law.” The Guide also briefly explains some relevant New York State laws. Although written for a New York audience, much of the Guide can be used anywhere in the country.

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