New York state will begin imposing major new addiction treatment service benefits mandates on all state-regulated health insurers Jan. 1.
The state will require individual major medical policies, state-regulated small-group plans, and state-regulated large group plans to eliminate insurance authorization requirements for patients seeking inpatient care for substance abuse disorders.
A carrier must pay for inpatient services for those disorders “as long as an individual needs them,” officials say in an announcement about the mandates.
Patients must be able to get emergency supplies of drug treatment medications without going through an insurance prior approval process, and all plans must cover naloxone, an opioid-overdose reversal medication, officials say.
Another provision will increase the amount of time families can force members who appear to be struggling with drug addiction to stay in emergency evaluation facilities to 72 hours, from 48 hours.
That provision will help stabilize people who appear to have drug addiction problems while protecting those people’s rights, officials say.
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo says in a statement that the insurance provisions in the package will help his state fight use of heroin and other opiates.