After parity - What's next

David L. Shern, Kirsten K. Beronio, Henry T. Harbin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


A new law prohibiting unequal treatment limits and financial requirements for mental health and substance abuse (MH/SA) benefits establishes critical protections for 113 million Americans. The new parity law doesn't mandate coverage for MH/SA treatment and anticipates management of the benefit. Given these features, clear regulations mapping the intent of the law are critical. Education regarding the costs of untreated or ineffectively treated MH/SA conditions is needed to encourage comprehensive coverage, because academic performance and worker productivity are at stake. As health care reform proceeds, we must use the new law to reinforce the centrality of mental health to overall health.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)660-662
Number of pages3
JournalHealth Affairs
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 2009
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Policy


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