The Paul Wellstone and Pete Domenici Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act (MHPAEA) of 2008 is Federal legislation that requires that group health plans and health insurance coverage offered in connection with group health plans offer mental health and substance use disorder (MH/SUD) benefits in a manner comparable to medical and surgical (M/S) benefits. In California, the Department of Managed Health Care (DMHC) is responsible for overseeing the implementation of MHPAEA by managed health care plans.

Since 2014, MHU has been contracted with DMHC to support the Department’s assessment of health plans’ implementation of the MHPAEA. MHU consultants have developed filing instructions to guide health plans in their preparation and filing of documents related to their implementation of MHPAEA. MHU consultants also have assessed the health plans’ non-quantitative treatment limitation policies and procedures. Starting in Summer 2016, MHU consultants will engage in onsite reviews at each health plan to ensure the submitted policies and procedures are being implemented as they were written.


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