Contact Governor Andrew Cuomo:
Mail: The Honorable Andrew M. Cuomo
Governor of New York State
NYS State Capitol Building
Albany, NY 12224
To find out who your local representatives are, visit https://www.usa.gov/elected-officials
Dear Governor Cuomo:
I am writing to you to express my support for an investigation of health insurance companies by the New York State Department of Financial Services (DFS), which is responsible for assuring that people in need of mental health or addictions care have timely, affordable access to these services.
As the Project Access study of almost 650 Long Islanders found, insurance companies and government are not living up to their responsibility to provide people with mental health and addictions care in a timely fashion.
Even when an insurance company has many providers listed on their behavioral health plans, they often no longer accept the insurance and want cash only, making it unaffordable, or they have months-long waiting lists.
Health insurers are discriminating against people living with mental illness and addiction. This is a violation of civil rights and federal parity law, which government regulators then fail to enforce, as is their statutory responsibility.
In New York, the DFS is charged with enforcement. I urge you to authorize, and DFS Commissioner Mary Vullo to implement, a full-scale investigation into network adequacy during this, the 10-year anniversary of the bipartisan Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act of 2008.
I stand with North Shore Child & Family Guidance Center, State Senators Todd Kaminsky and Elaine Phillips and Assemblyman Chuck Lavine in demanding a thorough investigation of insurance companies as it relates to the issue of network adequacy.
Commissioner Vullo agrees. In a Senate Health/Medicaid budget hearing on February 12, 2018, when Senator Kaminsky addressed this matter with her, she responded: “I agree with you that this is something we need to do more on, and we will.”
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