Mental Health Parity

Fair Insurance Coverage: IT’S THE LAW

Parity Poster

Federal law is clear that insurers can no longer discriminate against patients with mental illness, including substance use. But how many people know what constitutes a violation under the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act (MHPAEA)? Patients who know their rights are better equipped to protect their rights.

That's why APA created the "Fair Insurance Coverage: It's the Law" poster to help enforce the parity law and end discrimination (available in both English and Spanish).

The poster clearly and simply explains the law and the steps to take when a violation is suspected. Print it out and post it (in physicians' offices, clinics, break rooms at workplaces) and share the link.


Equal Access to Mental Health Coverage is the Law

Please join us in working to end discrimination against people seeking care for mental health conditions and substance use disorders.

MHPAEA requires that if a group health plan offers coverage for mental health or substance use disorder benefits, the financial requirements and treatment limitations for those benefits can be no more restrictive than the predominant requirements and limitations applied to substantially all medical/surgical benefits. This applies to private and public sector employers with more than 50 employees, including self-insured as well as fully insured plans.

MHPAEA permits self-insured state and local government employee plans to actively opt out of MHPAEA’s requirements for a specific plan year with option for renewal with noticie provided to subscribers. In addition to the small employer exemption, MHPAEA does not apply to individual market health coverage, retiree-only plans, Medicare, and certain other grandfathered plans.

MHPAEA requirements

Health plan implementation

APA members: how to report a problem

Non members: how to report problems to the Parity Implementation Coalition