The House and Senate each passed mental health parity legislation, bringing months of negotiation to a near close. While the legislation would expand current parity rules, employers could define the mental health and substance abuse conditions covered by their plans and use medical management techniques. States could establish stricter rules for insured health plans. Although House and Senate provisions are identical, because they are contained in different bills, it's not clear yet how the two will be reconciled. The law would be effective for plan years beginning a year after enactment. (Select News, 24 Sep 2008)
Norman DeLisle, MDRC
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