Regulation Gives Parity For Mental Health Coverage

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8, 2013, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/David Tulis) ADVERTISEMENT A new Obama administration rule requires insurers to cover treatment for mental health and substance abuse no differently than they do for physical illnesses. The Obama administration had pledged to issue a final mental health parity rule as part of its effort to reduce gun violence. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius says patients seeking mental health or substance abuse care have at time suffered discrimination through higher out-of-pocket costs or stricter limits on hospital stays or visits to the doctor. Sebelius says nearly 60 percent of people with mental health conditions and nearly 90 percent with substance abuse disorders don’t receive the treatment they need. The rule puts into effect legislation signed into law five years ago.
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Polling Low, Obama Defends Health Reform, Economic Sucesses

The shares of the Woodland Hills , California-based company declined 6.7 percent to $27.60 at 4 p.m. New York time, the biggest one-day drop since August 2012. CEO Jay Gellert said 2014 earnings wont increase from this year, while analysts had forecast a 26 percent rise to $2.73 a share, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The health insurer struggled in 2012, twice cutting its profit forecast that year after having problems with processing claims and higher-than-expected medical costs. Gellert said he anticipates changes in the companys membership makeup as people begin using the online health marketplaces created under the U.S. Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.
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Health Net Falls After 2014 Forecast Misses Estimates

“And it’s like, the gears of our economy, every time they are just about to take off, suddenly somebody taps the brakes and says, not so fast.” Obama said there is no question that the shutdown harmed job growth, and could end up affecting other economic data still to come. The Labor Department says 204,000 jobs were added in October, but the overall unemployment rate still rose to 7.3 percent. The president again highlighted his goals of increasing U.S. exports and increasing productivity and competitiveness. He called on Congress to pass comprehensive immigration reform, though political analysts agree that is not likely to happen this year.
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