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[Guidance Overview]

11/10/2013: HHS, Labor and Treasury Departments Release Final Mental Health Parity Rules (Faegre Baker Daniels LLP)

"The finalization of these rules is more significant because of the new federal 'essential' benefit mandate for mental health and substance abuse coverage in the [ACA].... The rules require health plans to cover the treatment of mental illness or drug or alcohol abuse at the same level (co-payments, deductibles and limits on visits to health care providers cannot be more restrictive or less generous) as they cover other health care treatment, although it does not mandate mental health benefits. States may choose to mandate specific mental health benefits, and MHPAEA requires that such benefits must be in parity with medical/surgical benefits in the same policy. The rules state that the general parity requirement applies separately for each type of financial requirement (deductibles, co-payments, co-insurance and out-of-pocket maximums) or treatment limit."

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