APA Lauds Supreme Court's Upholding of Federal Health Insurance Exchanges

June 25, 2015

The American Psychological Association applauded the U.S. Supreme Court's decision today upholding key provisions of President Barack Obama's Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.

PRESS RELEASE

WASHINGTON — The American Psychological Association applauded the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision today upholding key provisions of President Barack Obama’s Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.

“Making insurance affordable makes health care more accessible,” said APA President Barry S. Anton, PhD. “Health plans in the exchanges have robust mental health and substance use benefits and help accomplish the triple aim of increasing quality, reducing cost and improving patient experience, all of which are essential to improving our nation’s health care system.”

The court ruled 6-3 in King v. Burwell that individuals who get their health insurance through an exchange established by the federal government will be eligible for tax subsidies.

APA and its affiliated American Psychological Association Practice Organization have long supported the Affordable Care Act for expanding coverage for millions of Americans while lowering health care costs over the long term. The law recognizes the importance of care that is focused on the whole person and delivered by interdisciplinary, community-based teams of health professionals, including psychologists.

Greater access to mental and behavioral health care offered by psychologists and other qualified health professionals thanks to the law leads to better overall health outcomes, according to APA. Another significant aspect of the act promotes efforts to eliminate health disparities by first enhancing data collection and quality measure development and then through the adoption of a national strategy to improve the delivery of health care services and patient health outcomes. The law’s creation of the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) also represents a major contribution to health care quality. PCORI focuses on improving patient- and population-centered outcomes and on helping patients make better-informed treatment decisions.