Insurance Industry Battles Bill Mandating Mental Health Coverage

| August 28, 2002

Insurance Industry Battles Bill Mandating Mental Health Coverage

Mental health care costs can drain bank accounts just as quickly as medical bills, yet, legislation 'that would force insurers to offer the same level of coverage for mental illness as for other diseases' struggled to pass the House.

Kevin Bogardus writes in The Public I, that 33 states have passed similar legislation, and that the federal civil service system and even a reluctant President George W. Bush support the bill.

Nonetheless, the insurance industry fights the legislation by contributing more than $19 million in hard and soft money in the 2002 election cycle, according to Bogardus.

'Insurance companies make money by covering the healthiest part of the population,' Dr. Darrel Regier of American Psychiatric Association told the House subcommittee. 'By offering a poor mental health benefits program, you discourage those people from signing on.'

Victims of mental illness are not only stigmatized, but the costs of their treatment can cause unbearable financial strain.
--Sara V. Buckwitz
Go there>>

Pay Now Save $5!

Utne Summer 2016Want to gain a fresh perspective? Read stories that matter? Feel optimistic about the future? It's all here! Utne Reader offers provocative writing from diverse perspectives, insightful analysis of art and media, down-to-earth news and in-depth coverage of eye-opening issues that affect your life.

Save Even More Money By Paying NOW!

Pay now with a credit card and take advantage of our earth-friendly automatic renewal savings plan. You save an additional $5 and get 4 issues of Utne Reader for only $40.00 (USA only).

Or Bill Me Later and pay just $45 for 4 issues of Utne Reader!

Facebook Instagram Twitter