With the never ending changes to small business health insurance plan designs and the growing demand for small business health insurance plans to cover mental health benefits, there is a silver lining for those in need. Small business health Insurance Companies Now Must Cover Mental Health Benefits at Parity with Medical Benefits
Small Business Health Insurance Companies Now Must Cover Mental Health Benefits!
Contact Employers-Resource HR Services and Benefits experts at (800) 559-2350 Opt 7 to speak with their experienced staff members about your small business health insurance plan options and learn more!
As part of the President and Vice President’s continuing efforts to increase access to mental health services, the Administration issued the final rule implementing the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act of 2008, thus effecting the small business health insurance plan structure.
This means that for Small Business Health Insurance health plans, insurance companies must cover mental health benefits and addiction benefits at parity with medical and surgical benefits. The Department of Health and Human Services also released a letter to State health officials clarifying that Medicaid plans must also comply with parity requirements. For those that aren’t familiar with familiar with mental health and substance abuse coverage, this is a very big deal and may be a great time to evaluate your Small Business Health Insurance plan.
Parity is not just a buzzword. It has a real impact for the millions of people who are experiencing or will experience mental illness or addiction, these mental health benefits are critical. In fact, parity works to break down two key barriers that too often prevent these individuals – our friends, our family, our neighbors – from seeking help. First, it breaks down the financial barrier by generally prohibiting Small Business Health Insurance plans from placing more restrictive monetary requirements (for example, co-pays) or treatment limitations (for example, covered visits) on mental health and substance abuse benefits than on comparable medical and surgical benefits. Second, parity reduces the stigma associated with mental illness and addiction by reaffirming that illnesses of the brain should not be treated differently than illnesses of the body.
This rule gives consumers new tools that will increase parity. For example, the rule ensures that parity applies to services such as residential or intensive outpatient treatment. It also clarifies the transparency requirements insurance companies must follow, so consumers can be equipped with the information they need to make sure their plans are complying with the law for all mental health benefits.
Furthermore, as part of their comprehensive plan to reduce gun violence, the President and Vice President committed to issuing this final rule by the end of the calendar year. After accomplishing this step today, the Administration has now completed or made significant progress on all 23 executive actions included in their plan.
With this legislation in place, there is no reason to put off seeking help or treatment for mental health or substance abuse illnesses. Contact the Employers-Resource HR Services and Benefits experts to speak with one of their experienced staff members about your small business health insurance plan options.