The Herald Bulletin

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October 24, 2013

Biden: Country on cusp of mental health changes

BOSTON — Vice President Joe Biden says the country is on the cusp of what he called "remarkable changes" in the treatment of mental illness.

Speaking at a forum in Boston on Wednesday, Biden said that as a result of President Barack Obama's health care law, more people have access to care for mental illness. The law bars insurance companies from denying coverage due to preexisting conditions like bipolar disorder.

Biden was joined by Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius and former U.S. Rep. Patrick Kennedy. The event marked the 50th anniversary of President John F. Kennedy's signing of the Community Mental Health Act.

Sebelius said there's still work to be done to eliminate the stigma around mental illness. She said the stigma can be a barrier to treatment.

 

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