Statement of US Labor Secretary Hilda L. Solis regarding federal court ruling on mental health and substance abuse benefits

WASHINGTON — Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis today issued the following statement regarding a June 21 ruling by the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia in Coalition for Parity Inc. v. Sebelius et. al.:

"We are very pleased that the court ruled in favor of the U.S. Departments of Labor, Treasury, and Health and Human Services, thereby allowing us to continue a regulatory process designed to benefit vulnerable members of our society. It will make mental health benefits more affordable by putting the cost on par with other health benefits.

"In its ruling, the court stated that the federal departments 'had good cause to forego notice and comment' in developing interim final rules under the Paul Wellstone and Pete Domenici Mental Health Parity and Addition Equity Act of 2008.

"This ruling is a victory for American families who are faced with both the emotional and financial costs of obtaining mental health and substance abuse services."

The public comment period on the interim final rules ended May 3, and the departments are working expeditiously to develop the final regulation.