By: Paul Gionfriddo, President and CEO, MHA
“Mental Health America would like to thank the Obama Administration for convening the Mental Health and Substance Use Disorders Parity Task Force and for releasing this important report. MHA is particularly excited about investments in the system which will help with parity enforcements and increased supports to help consumers navigate this complex system.
"It is our hope that the next Administration will take up this issue and follow through with the recommendations set forth by this report. Doing so is necessary to ensure proper parity implementation and compliance.
“MHA strongly believes we must pass mental health reform this session to build on and improve upon the necessary clarification about the rights and responsibilities under parity. We must continue to work to put the individual first; to demand transparency; and enhance consumer support and protections.
“We know from our own recent State of Mental Health report that policy changes including Medicaid Expansion helped provide better coverage and access to care for individuals with mental illness. Implementation of the recommendations in the Parity Task Force final report will help ensure the kinds of continued care and improvements in our system that MHA wants to see.
“MHA will continue to advocate for the investment in earlier identification and intervention, integration of health and behavioral health care, the removal of barriers to services integration, the opportunity for peers to be reimbursed by insurers when they work on clinical care teams, the promotion of innovation, the strengthening of the lead federal agency dealing with mental health."