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How to comply with state’s new Mental Health Parity Law

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in Employee Benefits Program,Human Resources

Shortly before leaving office, Gov. Pataki signed New York’s Mental Health Parity Law, which requires insurers to provide mental health benefits in all health insurance policies issued in the state.

Although the law technically took effect Jan. 1, 2007, the signing date of Dec. 22, 2006, left little time for state agencies to gear up. So implementation will be an ongoing process over the coming months.

Expect higher health costs

Employer groups and insurers have long opposed mental-health-parity legislation because of the costs it adds to coverage. The Conference of Blue Cross and Blue Shield Plans estimates the new legislation will increase the cost of plans by 1.5 percent. Other industry-watchers place the additional costs at between 3 and 10 percent.

Wherever those figures come in, they will be on top of the 12 percent of current premiums that are due to state legislative mandates.

Fear of higher costs effect...(register to read more)

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