Congress Considers Lame Duck Action on Mental Health
Rumors inside the Beltway suggest that Congress could vote on a mental health and health research and innovation package after Thanksgiving. While details have yet to emerge, Rep. Fred Upton (R-MI) – Chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee and author of the 21st Century Cures Act – told House Republicans at a meeting last week that negotiations on the legislative package are nearing completion.
Read More on Congress Considers Lame Duck Action on Mental Health
Surgeon General’s Report on Addiction: What does it mean?
Addiction is one of the nation’s most pressing health concerns. One in seven Americans experience an addiction in their lifetime, and even more will misuse substances. Addiction is a chronic disease that puts a person at risk for other illnesses including HIV, cancer and heart disease. And, addiction costs our nation $442 billion annually in […]
Read More on Surgeon General’s Report on Addiction: What does it mean?
Future Uncertain for ACA, Medicaid Under New Administration and Congress
The Republican sweep of the White House and both chambers of Congress in last week’s election means big changes could be coming to the Affordable Care Act and Medicaid. President-Elect Donald Trump and GOP Congressional leaders ran on a platform to “repeal and replace” the ACA and plans to rein in spending for Medicaid. Both proposals could have a potentially devastating effects for both consumers and providers.
Read More on Future Uncertain for ACA, Medicaid Under New Administration and Congress
HHS Releases Details on New Medication Assisted Treatment Prescribers
The Department for Health and Human Services (HHS) has announced that starting in February 2017 nurse practitioners and physician assistants will be able to prescribe buprenorphine, a medication used to treat opioid addiction. This policy change, authorized by the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act (CARA), will create greater access to medication-assisted treatment by increasing the number of available prescribers across the country.
Read More on HHS Releases Details on New Medication Assisted Treatment Prescribers
Advocacy in 2017: Bring a Friend and Let’s Go to Work
In any post-election autopsy or forecast for the future, there is inevitably a ranking of the most powerful people in the room. As the political world prepares itself for a new presidential administration and Congress, the National Council wanted to share its list of the most powerful person in politics in 2017: YOU!
Read More on Advocacy in 2017: Bring a Friend and Let’s Go to Work
White House Task Force Releases Parity Recommendations
Last week, the White House Mental Health and Substance Use Disorder Parity Task Force released its recommendations for improving the implementation of the federal parity law. The Task Force report details the Obama Administration’s parity implementation activities undertaken throughout the last eight years, outlines new resources available as of today, and offers a number of recommendations for future action.
Read More on White House Task Force Releases Parity Recommendations
National Council Submits Comments on Changing the Language of Addiction
On Thursday, the National Council submitted comments to the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) on its draft guidance, Changing the Language of Addiction. The draft document is intended to advise federal agencies on terminology to use when discussing substance use and substance use disorders. Inappropriate terminology perpetuates negative stereotypes about people living with addictions, creating a disincentive for individuals to seek treatment for their disease. The National Council commends the ONDCP for their attention to this issue and offered the following comments and recommendations.
Read More on National Council Submits Comments on Changing the Language of Addiction
Resources on New Emergency Preparedness Rule Now Available
Last month, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a set of requirements to prevent breakdowns in patient care following natural disasters and other emergencies. These new requirements will directly impact a limited number of mental health providers, including those registered with Medicare as Community Mental Health Centers. This week, CMS released a number of resources for providers to review and utilize as they strive to meet compliance by the November, 2017 deadline.
Read More on Resources on New Emergency Preparedness Rule Now Available
Senate Finance Bill Would Expand Telehealth in Medicare
A draft bill out of the Senate Finance Committee would expand payments from Medicare for telehealth and telemedicine services. The CHRONIC Care Act draft, long in the works by the Committee, improves chronic disease care for Medicare beneficiaries and would include provisions to expand access to telehealth services for Medicare Advantage enrollees
Read More on Senate Finance Bill Would Expand Telehealth in Medicare
Medicare Part D Prescriber Enrollment Requirement Delayed
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announced this week that it is delaying the February 1, 2017 deadline for Medicare Part D prescribers to enroll in the Medicare program. CMS now expects full enforcement of enrollment to take effect on January 1, 2019. CMS aims to begin targeted enrollment of prescribers in the spring of 2017.
Read More on Medicare Part D Prescriber Enrollment Requirement Delayed