Tuesday, December 26, 2006

New York's New Mental Health Insurance Law Poses All Sorts of Problems

As if insurance costs weren't high enough already!

I'm afraid that George Pataki's signing of "Timothy's Law," a mandate that insurance companies provide coverage for most mental illnesses heralds an alarming new trend -- one which will 1) see insurance premiums soar still further, even for relatively healthy Americans; 2) create huge new subsidies for the costs engendered by risky and dissipated lifestyles; and 3) add to the legal and financial pressures on doctors and hospitals to practice "cost containment" which, in truth, becomes "care containment."

And note the article's promise of still further "development" of the idea -- "It will not, however, require coverage for treatment of post traumatic stress disorder, or for drug and alcohol dependencies -- a concession that was necessary to win sufficient support to pass the bill. Its sponsors have vowed to add those disorders to the list covered by the new law in future years."