PPP Deadline, New Emergency Broadband Program
QUOTABLE “The MATE Act boldly proclaims that all prescribers have a role to play in preventing, treating, and managing substance use disorders. For our nation to be truly healthy, we must understand substance use and treat it like every other medical condition. Our nation’s overdose crisis is having a devastating impact on communities. This legislation […]
Read More on PPP Deadline, New Emergency Broadband Program
COVID-19 Relief Signed Into Law
BREAKING NEWS Congress passed the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 on Wednesday. This $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief bill includes billions in support for life-saving mental health and substance use services. President Biden signed the package into law yesterday. For a comprehensive breakdown of the mental health and substance use disorder-related provisions, click here. For […]
Read More on COVID-19 Relief Signed Into Law
Senate to Vote on COVID Relief
BREAKING NEWS New “State of the Industry” data released by the National Council for Mental Wellbeing finds 40% of mental health and addiction treatment organizations surveyed will not be able to keep their doors open past the end of the year without additional federal relief. The data arrives amidst rising concerns about mental health, increases in overdoses, and a surge in overdose death rates in […]
Read More on Senate to Vote on COVID Relief
House Votes on COVID Relief Today
IN THE NEWS A new report by the University of Michigan’s School of Public Health outlines the various ways states utilize Medicaid waivers to increase access to quality behavioral health services. Medicaid Financing for Behavioral Health Services: The Use of Flexibilities and Authorities seeks to determine the variation in behavioral health provider reimbursement rates under […]
Read More on House Votes on COVID Relief Today
House Wraps Up Reconciliation, Working on COVID Package
BREAKING NEWS In accordance with a recent executive order on the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and Medicaid, the Special Enrollment Period (SEP) for the Health Insurance Marketplace reopened this week and will remain open through Saturday, May 15. House Wraps Up Reconciliation, Working on COVID Package Last week, House Committees finished work on budget […]
Read More on House Wraps Up Reconciliation, Working on COVID Package
New CCBHCs Announced, Budget Resolution Passed
On Wednesday, February 3, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) released a list of 134 clinics that were awarded a Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinic (CCBHC) Expansion Grant, expanding the program to now include 340 CCBHCs across 40 states, Guam, and Washington, D.C. These new CCBHCs will join the hundreds that have increased access to critical integrated, evidence-based behavioral health services to those in need. The National Council applauds this effort and thanks SAMHSA and Congress for recognizing the program’s importance and the need to expand access to high-quality mental health and substance use care.
Read More on New CCBHCs Announced, Budget Resolution Passed
CMS Announces Medicare Part D Demonstration, Methamphetamine Use Disorder Breakthrough
QUOTABLE “This hasty midnight regulation is a step against some of the most vulnerable people in our communities and the bipartisan lawmakers who have tirelessly defended the merits of Medicare’s protected classes policy. We look forward to working with the Biden administration and Congress to ensure we give people in our nation with the most […]
Read More on CMS Announces Medicare Part D Demonstration, Methamphetamine Use Disorder Breakthrough
CMS Guidance on End-of Pandemic Medicaid Changes, CCBHC Applications
BREAKING NEWS Dr. Elinore McCance-Katz resigned yesterday as the Assistant Secretary for Mental Health and Substance Use. The National Council sincerely thanks Dr. McCance-Katz for her service and contributions to the behavioral health community. Read her statement here. CMS Guidance on End-of-Pandemic Medicaid Changes On December 22, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services […]
Read More on CMS Guidance on End-of Pandemic Medicaid Changes, CCBHC Applications
Distribution of Provider Relief Funds, Crisis Stabilization Passes
QUOTABLE “Today, we move one step closer to improving how justice-involved people receive mental health and substance use disorder treatment… On behalf of the National Council, I thank Sens. Cornyn (R-TX) and Blumenthal (D-CT), as well as Reps. Trone (D-MD), Rutherford (R-FL), Dean (D-PA), Reschenthaler (R-PA), Scanlon (D-PA), and Armstrong (R-ND) for continuing to prioritize […]
Read More on Distribution of Provider Relief Funds, Crisis Stabilization Passes
House Passes Short-Term Federal Funding, Physician Fee Schedule Summary
QUOTABLE “COVID-19 has accelerated and expanded our country’s mental health and substance use disorder crisis. Access to treatment – when and where people need it – remains the biggest challenge we face. Unfortunately, insurers have consistently fought to illegally deny equitable coverage and states have lacked the tools to hold them accountable. No longer.” – […]
Read More on House Passes Short-Term Federal Funding, Physician Fee Schedule Summary
FY2021 Appropriations, Finalized Physician Fee Schedule
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT On Tuesday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices voted on their initial COVID-19 vaccine distribution recommendations. As written, it is unclear if behavioral health providers and organizations are included under the panel’s recommended Phase 1 vaccination distribution category. This also follows a new […]
Read More on FY2021 Appropriations, Finalized Physician Fee Schedule
Senate Passes Crisis Stabilization and Community Reentry Act, Funding Deadline Looms
QUOTABLE “I want to thank Senator Cornyn (R-TX) and Senator Blumenthal (D-CT) for their leadership in introducing the bill, as well as Senators from both sides of the aisle for prioritizing increased access to mental health treatment for incarcerated individuals. This is especially important during a time when our nation’s most vulnerable people are at […]
Read More on Senate Passes Crisis Stabilization and Community Reentry Act, Funding Deadline Looms
HHS Opens Phase 2 Portal
QUOTABLE “The addition of Kentucky and Michigan to the CCBHC Medicaid demonstration will lower barriers to access and allow more people in more communities to receive the treatment and services they need, like medication-assisted treatment, as they cope with the disruption caused by the pandemic. By extending the demonstration to Kentucky and Michigan, Congress has […]
Read More on HHS Opens Phase 2 Portal
Senate Releases COVID-19 Relief Package
On Monday, Senate Republicans introduced a series of bills in response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The series of proposals – collectively named the Health, Economic Assistance, Liability Protection and Schools (HEALS) Act – were drafted by the chairs of various committees of jurisdiction including Senate HELP, Finance, Small Business and Entrepreneurship and Appropriations. The HEALS Act totals nearly $1 trillion in relief aid and is the starting point for bipartisan negotiations between the House and Senate as they look to finalize a deal as quickly as possible.
Read More on Senate Releases COVID-19 Relief Package
House Appropriations Committee Approves FY21 Health Spending
The House Appropriations Committee approved its Labor-HHS spending levels for Fiscal Year 2021 on Monday, funding key federal health, education and labor programs for the year ahead.
Read More on House Appropriations Committee Approves FY21 Health Spending
2,000 Advocates Join National Council’s First Ever Virtual Hill Day at Home
This week, the National Council partnered with 29 national advocacy organizations to host our first ever Hill Day at Home. Due to the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, Hill Day 2020 was hosted virtually, making advocating for individuals living with mental illness and addiction more accessible than ever. A record-breaking 2,000 advocates from across the nation joined Hill Day at Home, reaching 511 Members of Congress with our policy asks. If you weren’t able to join live, you can access presentations and exhibitors’ information until July 23, and there is still time to reach out to your legislators – encouraging their support for a number of legislative priorities that are important to the behavioral health community.
Read More on 2,000 Advocates Join National Council’s First Ever Virtual Hill Day at Home
National Council Announces 2020 Legislators of the Year
The National Council for Mental Wellbeing is pleased to announce this year’s legislative honorees for Hill Day at Home 2020. Senator John Cornyn (R-TX) and Representative David Trone (D-MD) are each receiving the National Council’s Legislator of the Year Award in recognition of their hard work and dedicated commitment to the mental health and addiction community. The National Council and its partners will honor both legislators at our Virtual Policy Institute on Tuesday June 23rd. Register today to join us in honoring these two Congressional leaders and thank them for their continued support.
Read More on National Council Announces 2020 Legislators of the Year
House Unveils COVID-19 Response Proposal
The House of Representatives this week proposed a $3 trillion COVID-19 response package, called the Health Economic Recovery Omnibus Emergency Solutions (HEROES) Act. The bill includes a number of provisions that would support behavioral health providers, including $3 billion for various programs within the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, $100 billion for the Health Care Provider Relief Fund, as well as a codified application process and formula for providers to access the funds, eligibility expansions for nonprofits in the Paycheck Protection Program, and more. Although these provisions are steps forward for the nation’s coronavirus response, the National Council continues to push for more direct supports for behavioral health providers, including our main ask of $38.5 billion in emergency funds.
Read More on House Unveils COVID-19 Response Proposal
Congress Passes “Phase 3.5” COVID-19 Response Package
Congress has reached a $475 billion deal on a “Phase 3.5” legislative package to provide funding for pressing needs in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The deal provides an additional $310 billion for the Small Business Administration’s Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), which recently ran out of funds, as well as another $10 billion for the Economic Injury Disaster Loan program. It also provides $75 billion for health care providers via the Public Health and Social Services Emergency Fund, supplementing the $100 billion provided in the CARES Act. The bill now moves to President Trump’s desk for his signature, which is expected as early as today.
Read More on Congress Passes “Phase 3.5” COVID-19 Response Package
Advocates Continue Speaking Up for Behavioral Health on Federal Level
As Congress and federal agencies continue their work to provide economic relief for businesses and nonprofits as well as to address the unique public health challenges the country faces through the COVID-19 pandemic, the National Council and countless other vocal advocates have been bringing our voices to the table to ensure that mental health and addiction treatment providers and their patients have their needs met during these challenging times. From requests for $38.5 billion in direct emergency funds for mental health and addiction treatment providers and organizations to highlighting long-held legislative priorities, the National Council has listened to our members’ needs and has made moves to meet them.
Read More on Advocates Continue Speaking Up for Behavioral Health on Federal Level