February 28, 2008--We have been pushing hard since 2001 to enact full mental
health parity. Now, thanks to your outreach to legislators and the advocacy of
many others across the nation, victory is at last within reach. Following theSenate's
historic passage of the Mental Health Parity Act (S. 558) by unanimous consent in
September, the House is poised to take up its bill, H.R. 1424, on Wednesday, March 5.
Parity supporters across America should contact their Representative NOW
to urge his or her vote for H.R. 1424. Senate and House leaders should continue
to work together to reconcile differences between the versions and produce a bill
that can pass in both chambers.
se the toll-free Parity Hotline, 1-866-parity4 (1-866-727-4894), to call your
U.S. Representative. (The Parity Hotline reaches the Capitol switchboard,
which can connect callers to their members of Congress). If you are not sure
of your Representative's name, you can find it by entering your zip code at
Message: "I am calling to ask that the Representative vote for H.R. 1424,
the Paul Wellstone Mental Health & Addiction Equity Act. Parity is a fair and
affordable solution to insurance discrimination. It will save lives and families."
he Paul Wellstone Mental Health and Addiction Equity Act of 2007 expands the
Mental Health Parity Act of 1996 by prohibiting group health plans from
imposing treatment or financial limitations on mental health benefits that are
different from those applied to medical/surgical services. The legislation
applies only to group health plans already providing mental health benefits
and exempts plans sponsored by small businesses with fewer than 50 employees.
For extensive information, see the Bazelon Center's December 2007 Parity
Alert and the link there to the Mental Health Liaison Group's Parity page.