As I sit down to write this post, I am bubbling over with excitement!
This morning I was doing an errand at the hospital where I help out at times. And as I was leaving a coworker mentioned: “The governor’s in the lobby.”
Immediately, I knew what he was there for…
He was there to sign NJ’s parity bill!
This was actually something I’d been a part of for a few years & ultimately had to step away from when I started to have a recurrence of my depression 1 ½ years ago.
First, I was so excited for all my fellow coalition members who’d kept up the fight to see it get done. For some, they’d started the battle 7 years ago.
Lesson for everyone else: DON’T GIVE UP!!!
Second, I was so excited for the residents in New Jersey who now, could not be discriminated against by their health insurance.
Just in case you are not familiar with “parity” – let me give a quick overview.
For decades, insurance plans covered behavioral health services different from how they cover physical health. This usually led to a lot of needed services & treatment being denied.
Basically, if you were in need of behavioral health services, you were discriminated against by insurance plans.
I remember 20 years ago when I had a $500 deductible for my physical health AND a $1,000 deductible for my mental health.
In 2008, Congress passed the federal Parity Law, requiring the equal coverage.
It is up to each state to enforce the law and make sure it was being followed. That was the work started 7 years ago by the NJ Parity Coalition.
That was the law signed by Governor Murphy!
For more information about how you can find out more about your state or get involved & advocate for equal access, visit Don’t Deny Me.
They are an important source of information if you have been denied coverage or access to treatment.
~ To Living Well TODAY! ~
via Esperanza – Hope To Cope
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