The Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act 2011 have brought some much needed change in the treatment of mental illness. Although there is no doubt that medication as a mode of treating mental disorders has brought great benefits to patients, the imbalance caused by prescription medicine to treat one segment of the population, while neglecting another segment creates great health problems.
Mental Health Parity
Hence, the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act seek to bring about some balance. It seeks to mandate that healthcare service organizations provide equal treatment to all patients, irrespective of their illness or background.
The Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act 2011 have brought about some changes in the way that alcoholism and drug abuse are treated in the U.S. The minimum mandated benefit for individuals with disabilities was increased from fifty percent coverage to one hundred percent coverage.
This means that an individual with any mental health condition will be entitled to one hundred percent of the available services in nursing care, while the rest of the population will receive a minimum mandated benefit of fifty percent mental health treatment. Apart from this, there will also be provisions of additional services and care for individuals who require specialized nursing care.
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Treatment Services Act (SAMHSA) are the primary legislation that deals with the prevention of the crack down on substance abuse and dependence. The parity and Addiction Equity Act on the other hand, is meant to deal with the mentally ill and vulnerable sections of the society.
According to the Parity and Addiction Equity Act, the mentally ill and the vulnerable sections of the society shall be provided equal opportunity in the community to avail treatment for their respective mental illnesses. In general, all those who require the services of substance abuse counselors shall be eligible to avail these services under the Act. However, individuals with severe mental illness who have been unable to seek treatment in the community shall be entitled only to home-based substance abuse counseling.
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Act also state that people suffering from any kind of severe mental illness including bipolar disorder and schizophrenia, as well as those suffering from any other kind of mental illnesses, including autism, developmental disorders, ADHD, ODD, as well as any other serious psychological disorders, shall be entitled to at least one hour of free counseling under the provision of this act every day.
Those who are suffering from nervous disorders and those with any kind of phobias, including post traumatic stress disorder, will also be given equal opportunity under the parity and Addiction Equity Act. According to the Act, anyone who requires professional help in combating his/her nervous disorder or phobia shall be entitled for free counseling under the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Act.
In addition, the mentally ill, people with any type of developmental disabilities, and people with any other disabilities who require professional counseling in any form will also be entitled to receive free counseling under the Parity and Addiction Equity Act. These include people with any kind of mental illness, including any kind of phobia. However, the professionals may also refer persons having any kind of nervous disorder to medical doctors for further consultation and diagnosis.
According to the provisions of the Parole Act, anyone who is suffering from a serious mental disorder or any other serious mental illness and requires professional help, shall be entitled for free counselling under the HMOs. According to the HMOs, they cannot mandate the clients to take medication under their HMO. HMO will also not compulsorily supply medication.
The insured person will have to make an application for the prescribed medication and submit to the tests required for the same. According to the Parole Act, the HMO will have to consider the necessity and severity of the patient’s condition and hence will not be able to refuse the application for the medication.
According to the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act, anyone who is suffering from any kind of mental disorder or any other serious medical condition shall be entitled to equal treatment with others. The term ‘equity refers to the fact that both the insured person and the persons qualifying for the same shall get the same treatment irrespective of their gender, age, social status, religion, or any other such criterion.
The person who has a mental illness or substance abuse will be provided with equal opportunities with others. HMO and PPO are two very famous health insurance plans, which ensure all the patient’s equal rights to recovery. They also offer mental health treatment, through a medication and therapy package that can be of great benefit to the family of the person suffering from any kind of mental illness.