H.R.1767: Excellence in Mental Health and Addiction Treatment Expansion Act
The Excellence in Mental Health and Addiction Treatment Expansion Act is a bipartisan bill that would extend and expand the demonstration projects established by the Protecting Access to Medicare Act (PAMA). Originally, PAMA funded the establishment of Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinics (CCBHC) for two years in eight states. The eight states chosen for the pilot program were: Minnesota, Missouri, New Jersey, New York, Nevada, Oklahoma, Oregon, and Pennsylvania. However, 11 other states applied for the program and were not selected. This new bill would extend funding for the existing CCBHC programs for two more years and fund additional CCBHC programs for two years in 11 other states.
Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinics are centers where individuals can get comprehensive care for mental health issues or addiction. The major concerns these clinics seek to address are disjointed care for mental and physical health, long wait times for mental health and addiction services, and low quality services. Some of their services include outpatient mental health and substance abuse treatment, 24/7 crisis services, risk assessment and diagnosis, immediate screenings, and care coordination with law enforcement and local emergency rooms. CCBHCs are required to provide care regardless of an individual’s ability to pay. While the federal government provides enhanced matching funds to cover demonstration services for Medicaid beneficiaries, CCBHCs must be accessible to individuals with all types of insurance.
S. 824 is the Senate companion bill.View Full Overview
- The National Council for Behavioral Health analyzed the impact of CCBHCs and found they successfully increased access to mental health and addiction treatment services and helped communities address the opioid epidemic.
- The National Assembly supports this bill because every individual deserves access to appropriate mental health and addiction treatment. Services such as these can help people reach their full potential, benefitting all communities.