FY 2020 Health Spending Package Passes House
Last week, the House passed its fiscal year 2020, Defense-Labor, Health and Human Services, Education (Labor-HHS) appropriations bills, which include funding for federal mental health and addiction programs. The $1 trillion package would prioritize funding to address the opioid crisis and increase medical research. The minibus passed largely along party lines and is unlikely to pass the Republican-controlled Senate as currently written. Importantly, Congressional leaders from both parties and President Trump will need to work out a larger deal to lift impending budget caps before September 30th, 2019 for any spending bill to become law.
The legislation would set the Department of Health and Human Services’ (HHS) budget overall at $99.4 billion, or over $20 billion more than was requested by President Trump in his budget proposal. To address the opioid addiction crisis, the bill contains funding increases for the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) as well as the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Find the full bill text here and accompanying press release and summary here.
Topline funding levels include:
|Agency||FY 2020 Funding||FY 2020 vs FY 2019|
|Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA)||$5.9 billion||+$129 million|
|National Institutes of Health (NIH) Overall funding||$41.1 billion||+$2 billion|
|Community Mental Health Services Block Grant||$757.6 million||+$35 million|
|Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment Block Grant||$1.9 billion||Level funding|
|Promoting the Integration of Primary and Behavioral Health Care (PIPBHC) Grants||$49.9 million||Level funding|
|PIPBHC Technical Assistance and Training Center||$2 million||Level funding|
|Mental Health First Aid||$20.9 million||Level funding|
|State Opioid Response (SOR) Grants||$1.5 billion||Level funding|
|Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinic (CCBHC) Expansion Grants||$150 million||Level funding|
|Loan Repayment Program for Substance Use Disorder Treatment Professionals (authorized by 2018 SUPPORT Act)||$25 million||+$25 million|
The House has continued work on other appropriations bills to fund federal agencies such as the Food and Drug Administration that have included provisions for the Rural Health and Safety Education Program and mental health courts.
The bill now moves to the Senate, which has yet to begin its work on any of the FY 2020 spending bills. More importantly, lawmakers must clear a measure to increase the budgetary spending caps mandated by the Budget Control Act (BCA) of 2011 prior to finalizing a budget for FY 2020. Without a budget caps deal, $125.7 billion in spending cuts that would be automatically triggered via a process known as sequestration.