"Parity" means "equal to". In health care, parity means that mental health and addiction treatment services are delivered at the same level, frequency and availability as medical and surgical services.
HHS’s New Mental Health and Substance Use Disorder Benefit Resources Will Help People Seeking Care to Better Understand Their Rights, SAMHSA, 2022
Therapists Want to Provide Affordable Mental Health Care. Here’s What’s Stopping Them, CaliforniaHealth Report 2020
Equal Treatment: A Review of Mental Health Parity Enforcement in CA, CA Health Care Foundation 2020
Mental Health Parity and Medical Necessity in California: Frequently Asked Questions, The Kennedy Forum
Generally Accepted Standards of Behavioral Health Care (including "Wit v. United Behavioral Health" - 2019 Landmark Ruling), The Kennedy Forum
Disparities in Network Use and Reimbursement Rates, Overview of Milliman Report and Findings, Dec. 2017
SB 255 Addresses Timely Access
This state law requires a health care service plan or health insurer to incorporate timely access to care standards into its quality assurance systems and incorporate specified processes. Senate Floor Analysis SB 225
SB 855 Addresses Parity & Access
This state law requires commercial health plans and insurers outside of Medi-Cal (which is regulated by different standards) to provide full coverage for treatment of all mental health conditions and substance use disorders.