WASHINGTON, Jan. 16, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The following is a statement by Mark Covall, president and CEO of the National Association of Psychiatric Health Systems (NAPHS).
"As the subject of mental health and substance use receives renewed attention today, it is appropriate that the bi-partisan Paul Wellstone and Pete Domenici Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act will be fully implemented this year. This legislation has begun to transform how Americans view mental health and substance use disorders.
"Most Americans today know that if they get sick and need help their health insurance will cover what they need. That has not been the case for people with mental and addictive disorders. If you can get help for your heart problem, there is no reason you shouldn't get the same help for brain disorders.
"The issuance of final rules for the parity law – both for private insurance and Medicaid managed care – will provide millions of Americans living with mental and addictive disorders both hope and help to get the critical care they need.
"We thank the Administration and Congress for their tireless efforts to make this law a reality for millions of Americans. This has truly been a bipartisan effort that will make a real difference in people's lives."
NAPHS (www.naphs.org) advocates for behavioral health and represents provider systems that are committed to the delivery of responsive, accountable, and clinically effective prevention, treatment, and care for children, adolescents, adults, and older adults with mental and substance use disorders. NAPHS members are behavioral healthcare provider organizations that own or manage more than 700 psychiatric hospitals, general hospital psychiatric and addiction treatment units and behavioral healthcare divisions, residential treatment facilities, youth services organizations, and extensive outpatient networks. The association was founded in 1933.
SOURCE National Association of Psychiatric Health Systems