CMS Issues Guidance on Parity and Medicaid
On January 16, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a letter to State Medicaid Directors and Health Officials with guidance on the applicability of the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act (MHPAEA) to Medicaid Alternative Benefit Plans (ABPs), sometimes referred to as benchmark plans. The letter indicates that all Medicaid ABPs must meet MHPAEA requirements. This applies to ABPs delivered through managed care and non-managed care arrangements. The letter also describes how MHPAEA applies to the Children's Health Insurance Program and to Medicaid managed care organizations.