Evaluation of Parity in the Federal Employees Health Benefits (FEHB) Program

Final Report

Published In: Parity Evaluation Research Team. Evaluation of Parity In the Federal Employees Health Benefits (FEHB) Program: Final Report, December 2004 (Washington D.C.: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Assistant Secretary For Planning and Evaluation, 2004)

Posted on RAND.org on December 31, 2003

by M. Audrey Burnam, David J. Dausey, M. Susan Ridgely, Stephanie S. Teleki, Alexander Young, Sydne Newberry

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In January 2001, the Federal Employees Health Benefits (FEHB) Program, the largest employer-sponsored health insurance program in the Nation, instituted a mental health and substance abuse (MH/SA) parity policy in compliance with an earlier Presidential directive. This policy mandated that MH/SA services would be covered to the same extent as general medical care with respect to benefit design features, such as deductibles, copayments, and limits on visits and inpatient days. In the fall of 2000, the Department of Health and Human Services awarded a contract to evaluate the implementation and impact of MH/SA parity benefits in terms of access, utilization, cost, and quality of care. The findings of this evaluation are reported in the attached report.

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