Lawmakers Introduce Parity Reform Effort in Government-Backed Health Plans

Two Democratic senators have proposed changes to the Social Security Act that could ensure parity and integration of behavioral health in government health plans. Sen. Michael Bennet (D-Colo.) and Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) announced Wednesday the release of the Better Mental Health Care for Americans Act, a bill that would impact behavioral health provisions of […]

Senate Committee Releases Bipartisan Behavioral Health Parity Proposal

Key U.S. senators put forward a tentative plan aimed at bolstering behavioral health parity in Medicare and Medicaid. On Thursday, the Senate Finance Committee released a discussion draft bill on behavioral health parity in Medicare and Medicaid, a fifth in a series of similar proposed reforms. Leading into 2022, the finance committee formed five bipartisan […]

Senate Finance Committee Entertains Adding LMFTs, Counselors to Medicare

The Senate Finance Committee is considering establishing Medicare reimbursements for mental health services from licensed marriage and family therapists (LMFTs) and licensed professional counselors. On Thursday, the committee released draft legislation that would impact several regulations — mostly involving Medicare — related to the behavioral health workforce. “There is an enormous need all across the […]

Gun Deal Pushes for Mental Health Investments, Expansion of CCBHC Model

Lawmakers in the gridlocked U.S. Senate announced a framework for legislation meant to address public mass shootings in schools while also building upon the nation’s mental health foundation. Announced on Sunday, the proposed plan would enact certain gun-reform policies and pave the way for several mental health- and school safety-related efforts. Ultimately, the goal would […]

Senate’s First Crack at Mental Health Reform Zeroes in on Telehealth

New draft legislation would remove Medicare’s in-person requirements for mental health telehealth visits. The Senate Finance Committee released draft legislation that for the first time encapsulates the work of the committee on mental health initiatives. Released May 26, the draft seeks to establish and expand the use of telehealth to treat the behavioral health of […]

Schools Poised to Anchor Youth Mental Health Services — Reimbursement, Privacy Concerns Pose Barrier

American K-12 schools could be the epicenter of an accelerating effort to address the youth mental health crisis. Lawmakers, advocates and entrepreneurs see schools as the best place to center addressing the youth mental crisis because that’s where kids are for major portions of any given day for most of the year. The American compulsory […]