WASHINGTON, D.C. — The American Psychiatric Association (APA) last fall joined six other health organizations in filing a lawsuit against the Administration’s decision to allow for the expanded sale of short-term, limited duration plans (STLDI) in exchange for comprehensive health plans mandated by the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Today, a federal district court judge upheld the government’s regulations regarding STLDI plans. In response, the APA issued the following statements:
“We are deeply disappointed that the court ruled in favor of the Administration’s rule, which will allow these plans to deny coverage for pre-existing conditions, and have other detrimental impacts for our patients,” said APA President Bruce Schwartz, M.D. “This ruling could be catastrophic for many Americans with mental illness or substance use disorders. These patients have complex medical needs and rely on strong, predictable insurance protection and care. As a result of this ruling, many will suffer and may end up in mental health crises seeking care in emergency rooms as well as incurring great personal financial costs.”
The APA joined the Association for Community Affiliated Plans (ACAP), National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), Mental Health America, AIDS United, National Partnership for Women & Families, and Little Lobbyists in the suit, ACAP vs. Treasury. An appeal is expected.
“We will continue to fight on behalf of our patients who are entitled, by the ACA, to comprehensive health coverage,” said APA CEO and Medical Director Saul Levin, M.D., M.P.A.
American Psychiatric Association
The American Psychiatric Association, founded in 1844, is the oldest medical association in the country. The APA is also the largest psychiatric association in the world with more than 38,500 physician members specializing in the diagnosis, treatment, prevention and research of mental illnesses. APA’s vision is to ensure access to quality psychiatric diagnosis and treatment. For more information please visit www.psychiatry.org.