Advocacy Alert: BHAP Endorses New Legislation to Make Behavioral Health More Affordable

January 30, 2020


On January 10, 2020, Representative Lauren Underwood introduced HR 5575 with 19 other members of the House of Representatives.

The Primary and Behavioral Health Care Access Act would require insurance to cover three primary care visits and three mental health or substance use disorder treatment visits per year without charging patients out-of-pocket.

BHAP has endorsed this bill, along with several other organizations. As noted in the press release from Representative Underwood’s website, approximately one in four Americans skip necessary medical care because of costs. Out-of-pocket costs, which can be over $200 per visit, are a key barrier to seeking care. By reducing financial barriers for these visits, the Primary and Behavioral Health Care Access Act would help patients access the care they need to improve their health and well-being.

Underwood is quoted in an article in the Northwest Herald: “I hear countless stories in my own conversations with Illinoisans across our community when I am here at home,” she said. “High health care costs don’t just affect the uninsured. Many Americans with private health insurance, (which makes for) good insurance, aren’t able to afford the care that they need because of high deductibles, copayments and coinsurance costs.”

The bill is currently in the House Energy and Commerce Committee. We encourage you to reach out to your representative and express your support of HR 5575.



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