For years now, health care professionals have known the importance of a person’s mental and emotional wellbeing as part of their overall health. Several years ago, the federal government also saw this link and wanted to make sure that people had access to behavioral and mental health services as part of their health plans. So, they put rules in place to help ensure that certain health plans provided equal treatment for behavioral, mental health and substance abuse services as they do for other medical services. This is commonly referred to as mental health parity. Employer groups and health plans are familiar with mental health parity and the importance of making sure that benefits and services follow the federal government’s parity rules. The government passed the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021 that includes requirements for insurers and plan sponsors to provide proof to the US Department of Labor that things like prior authorization requirements, network tier designs and medical management are equal for medical and behavioral health services. Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and Blue Care Network are constantly monitoring federal and state regulations and we have information for our employer groups. You can contact your sales representative as needed.
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