Space Coast Mental Health Counselors Association
April 13, 2018
FEDERAL GOVERNMENT ACTIVITY
Information updated April 5, 2018
H.R.2228 /S 867— 115th Congress (2017-2018) Law Enforcement Mental Health and Wellness Act of 2017 To provide support for law enforcement agency efforts to protect the mental health and well-being of law enforcement officers, and for other purposes.
The Attorney General, in coordination with the Secretary of Health and Human Services, shall develop resources to educate mental health providers about the culture of Federal, State, tribal, and local law
enforcement agencies and evidence-based therapies for mental health issues common to Federal, State, local, and tribal law enforcement officers.
Bill Introduced 04/28/2017) by Rep. Brooks, Susan W. [R-IN-5] Cosponsors: (32), passed the Senate without amendment on 5/17/2017 and became Law January 10, 2018.
Click here to Read H.R. 2228
H.R. 3032 Mental Health Access Improvement Act of 2017. To amend title XVIII of the Social Security Act to provide for the coverage of marriage and family therapist services and mental health counselor services under part B of the Medicare program, and for other purposes.
Sponsor: Rep. Katko, John [R-NY-24]. (Introduced 06/23/2017) 51 co-sponsors including Rep. John Rutherford (R) FL District-4, Rep. Vern Buchanan (R) FL District 16, and Rep Darren Soto (D) FL District 9. Referred to Committee on Energy and Commerce and Ways and Means. Actions from these committees: bill was referred on 6/30/2017 by Energy and Commerce and on 7/5/2017 the Ways and Means Committee referred bill to the Subcommittee on Health.
Click here to Track HR 3032 progress
H.R.2677 — 115th Congress (2017-2018) Stop Mental Health Stigma in Our Communities Act
To amend the Public Health Service Act to provide for behavioral and mental health outreach and education strategies to reduce stigma associated with mental health among the Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander population.
Sponsor: Rep. Chu, Judy [D-CA-27] (Introduced 05/25/2017) Cosponsors: (2). Referred to the Subcommittee on Health 05/26/2017
Click here to Track H.R.2677 progress
H.R.1982 — 115th Congress (2017-2018) Mental Health Access and Gun Violence Prevention Act of 2017. To authorize funding to increase access to mental health care treatment to reduce gun violence.
Sponsor: Rep. Jackson Lee, Sheila [D-TX-18] (Introduced 04/06/2017) Cosponsors: (3) including Darren Soto D-FL-District 9 on 03/05/2018. On 04/19/2017 referred to the Subcommittee on Health. On 05/01/2017 referred to the Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, Homeland Security, and Investigations by Committee on the Judiciary.
Congress finds as follows:
(1) Suicide is the leading cause of gun related deaths in America. More than 60 percent of deaths by guns in the country are the result of individuals using these weapons as a means to commit suicide. Some of these deaths might have been prevented if there were adequate background checks.
(2) Victims of domestic abuse are more likely to become victims of homicide when a gun is present. Further, individuals who suffer from mental illnesses are more likely to be victims rather than perpetrators of violence.
(3) Approximately 1 in 4 American adults have a mental illness and nearly half of all adults in America will develop at least one mental illness during their lifetime.
(4) Less than half of children and adults with diagnosable mental health problems receive the treatment they need.
Click here to Track H.R. 1982 progress.
H.R.2913/ S 1730 — 115th Congress (2017-2018) Mental Health in Schools Act of 2017. To amend the Public Health Service Act to revise and extend projects relating to children and violence to provide access to school-based comprehensive mental health programs
Revise, increase funding for, and expand the scope of the Project AWARE State Educational Agency Grant Program carried out by the Secretary of Health and Human Services, in order to provide access to more comprehensive school-based mental health services and supports;
provide for comprehensive staff development for school and community service personnel working in the school; and
(3) provide for comprehensive training for children with mental health disorders, for parents, siblings, and other family members of such children, and for concerned members of the community.
Sponsor: Rep. Napolitano, Grace F. [D-CA-32] (Introduced 06/15/2017) Cosponsors: (43) including Rep. Castor, Kathy [D-FL-14] on 06/21/2017, Rep. Mast, Brian J. [R-FL-18] on 02/27/2018, Rep. Murphy, Stephanie N. [D-FL-7] on 03/08/2018.
Click here to Track H.R 2913 progress and Click here to Track S 1730 progress.
Related House Bill to HR 2913 and S 1730
H.R. 4142 Safer Communities Act of 2017. To protect individuals by strengthening the Nation’s mental health infrastructure, improving the understanding of violence, strengthening firearm prohibitions and protections for at-risk individuals, and improving and expanding the reporting of mental health records to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System.
Sponsor: Rep. Thompson, Mike [D-CA-5] (Introduced 10/26/2017), Cosponsors: (4). No FL Reps cosponsoring. 11/14/2017 Referred to the Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, Homeland Security, and Investigations.
Click here to Track H.R. 4142
H.R. 1173/S 448 Medicare Mental Health Access Act. To amend title XVIII of the Social Security Act to provide for treatment of clinical psychologists as physicians for purposes of furnishing clinical psychologist services under the Medicare program.
Sponsor: Rep. Noem, Kristi L. [R-SD-At Large] (Introduced 02/16/2017), Cosponsors: (39). Language of bill does NOT include Mental Health Counselors, bill only addresses ‘Clinical Psychologists”.
Click here to Track HR 1173 or related bill S 448
S 1879 Seniors Mental Health Access Improvement Act of 2017. To amend title XVIII of the Social Security Act to provide for the coverage of marriage and family therapist services and mental health counselor services under part B of the Medicare program, and for other purposes.
Bill introduced 9/27/2017 by Rep. John Barrasio R-WY and read twice then referred to the Committee on Finance on 9/27/2017. These are the bills that FMHCA and AMHCA are working hard to pass that were originally created in 201s: adds Mental Health Counselors and Marriage and Family therapists to the list of Medicare Part B providers for behavioral healthcare benefits including 1) writing post-hospitalization care plans 2) hospice care 3) all defined benefits under Medicare Part B. Benefits are EXCLUDED from Skilled Nursing Facility benefits. The Senate bill has 9 co-sponsors with no Florida representation.
Click here to Track S 1879 progress.
Seniors Mental Health Access Improvement Act of 2015 / Mental Health Access Improvement Act of 2015 (FMHCA’s Government Relations Committee referred in the past to these bills as “Medicare Payment Reform Act”)
S 1830 and HR 2759: This is the bill that FMHCA and AMHCA are working hard to pass: adds Mental Health Counselors and Marriage and Family therapists to the list of Medicare Part B providers for behavioral healthcare benefits including 1) writing post-hospitalization care plans 2) hospice care 3) all defined benefits under Medicare Part B. Benefits are EXCLUDED from Skilled Nursing Facility benefits. No new information. The Senate bill has 15 co-sponsors – the only action on this bill was July 22, 2015 when the Senate Bill was referred to the Committee on Finance.
Click here to Track S 1830 progress
The House Bill Title VI Section 601 contains similar language as the Senate Bill regarding mental health counselors and marriage and family therapists becoming Medicare providers. Last action was on September 19, 2016 when it was referred to the Subcommittee on Health, Employment, Labor, and Pensions.
Click here to Track HR 5475 progress
HR 5161 To amend title 38, United States Code, to expand the qualifications for licensed mental health counselors of the Department of Veterans Affairs.
Introduced 4/29/2016 was referred to the Subcommittee on Health on 5/26/2016. This bill adds language to allow Mental Health Counselors with “equivalent degrees” to the Master’s Degree to be reimbursed by Veteran’s Administration for Services.
Via Wild Apricot news blasts and via POPVOX, FMHCA is requesting member support of this bill. A search of FMHCA’s website does not provide information regarding a POPVOX account. POPVOX has changed its login information. Your e-mail address and password are all you need. Once you have an account, you will be directed to create an account in the State and Federal Governments’ sites. Alerts come directly from the governmental entities.
No actions since 5/26/2016
Click here to Track HR 5161 progress
H.R. 4052 Is a bill to amend the Public Health Service Act to prioritize the treatment of veterans with traumatic brain injuries through the National Health Service Corps, on November 17, 2015 was referred to Subcommittee on Health. The bill sponsor is Representative Maxine Waters and has 12 co-sponsors. No other activity has occurred.
Click here to Track H. R. 4052
H.R. 642: Bill to amend Title 38 to include beneficiary travel for veterans to receive specialized treatment for sexual trauma while in military duty. Introduced February 2, 2015, referred to House Veterans Affairs Subcommittee on Health and no further action has been taken on this bill. The bill sponsor is Representative Jackie Walorski and has 24 cosponsors.
Click here to Track H.R. 642
To Track Legislation through AMHCA’s Legislative Advocacy: Click here.
FLORIDA GOVERNMENT ACIVITY
Updated April 5, 2018
FMHCA Legislative Update 03/26/2018
Governor Scott orders DCF and Police to identify, help young people with Mental Health Issues. This adds to the provisions already outlined in the Marjory Stoneman Douglass High School Public Safety Act (FL SB7026 (18R) which the Governor signed into law March 9, 2018. The 105 page bill includes funding for mental health services at schools and to direct mental health counselors to all schools.
SB7026 Marjory Stoneman Douglass High School Public Safety Act
Click here to Read SB 7026
FMHCA Press Statement-March 23, 2018
“Medicare Language Fails to be Included in the Omni-budget”
“While the language to Amend Title XVIII (Inclusion of MH Counselors and MFTS) failed to make the cut, the following was included with the report that accompanied the release of the Omni-Budget of 2018.
Mental Health Providers: The agreement is aware that Medicare beneficiaries have limited access to substance use disorder and mental health services, particularly in rural and underserved areas. The agreement notes concern about the shortage of eligible mental health providers for the Medicare population and supports efforts to explore the expansion of the mental and behavioral health workforce. (Division H – L-HHS-ED p. 50)
According to Jordan Hayman of the House Budget Office: Report language [such as this] is generally the first step in calling attention to a problem and the beginning of further discussions.
H.B. 49: A bill to provide a tax credit to businesses who hire degree-seeking students as interns AFTER the internship is completed. The bill states the tax credit will be a “up to a specific amount” and the credit will be available to “certain businesses”. The bill was introduced on August 18, 2017 by Shevrin Jones and was read for the first time on the House of Representatives Floor January 8, 2018 .
Died in Post-Secondary Education Subcommittee on Saturday, March 10, 2018 12:00 AM
Click here to Track H.B. 49
CONTROLLED SUBSTANCES LEGISLATION:
HB 6049 and SB 1134 are for Medical Marijuana Treatment Facility Licensing. The bills limit the number of regional treatment providers to 10 and the number of facilities providers can own in a region to 26. The bills were filed December 7 and 6, 2017 respectively. The provisions provide specific requirements. To read the companion bills please follow the links below:
House Bill – Sponsor – Rep. Shevrin Jones:
Click here to Read House Bill 6049
Senate Bill – Sen Darryl Rousen:
Click here to Read Senate Bill 1134
SB 458, HB 21 & S.B. 8: Filed October 9, 13 and 23, 2017 respectively are to require physicians subscribing controlled substances for pain to obtain training and qualifications to prevent abuse of these substances AND to limit the prescriptions to 7 days. SB 8 was referred to the Health Policy, Appropriations and Rules Committees on October 25, 2017. HB 21 Was referred to Health Quality Subcommittee on October 26, 2016. SB458 was referred to Health Policy, Appropriations, and Rules on October 25, 2017. Corrine Mixson provided the following explanation to the Government Relations Committee:
“To clarify, The legislature plans to limit physicians from prescribing these medications for more than seven days for the purpose of treating acute pain. These patients will instead receive other kinds of (alternative) treatments or will be sent home with over-the-counter medication after the initial seven days. In addition, since anyone prescribing opioids would be required to check the database, some individuals with chronic pain who are still “doctor shopping” would no longer have access to the opioid they have become addicted to. In either case, the mental health counseling profession, especially those working in substance-abuse treatment, would notice changes.”
SB 8 Passed the Health Policy Committee by unanimous vote on January 16, 2018. Passed the Appropriations Committee by a unanimous vote on January 24, 2018. The Bill was on the Rules Committee’s agenda on February 1, 2018. Effective Date: Except as otherwise expressly provided in this act, this act shall take effect July 1, 2018
Last Activity: 03/07/18 Senate Laid bill (S 8) on Table, refer to CS/CS/HB 21 -SJ 799 on Wednesday, March 07, 2018
SB 458 3/10/18 S Died in Health Policy on Saturday, March 10, 2018
CS/HB 21. Law passed. Signed by Governor on 03/19/2018 and is effective July 1, 2018.
Click here to Read the entire Senate bill (98 Pages):
Click here to Track (S 8 ) progress:
Click here to Track progress of HB 21:
HB 2173 – Centerstone Psychiatric Residency Expansion
Filed on November 1, 2017 and was referred back and forth between Health Care Appropriations Subcommittee and the Appropriations Committee until it received a favorable referral out of the subcommittee to the Appropriations Committee on January 16, 2018.
Click here to Track HB 2173
SB 434 and HB 407 Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome Pilot Project –
These bills establish a pilot project to license facilities to treat infants who are born with Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome. The costs incurred are expected to $410,000. HB 407 was filed on November 1, 2017 and is in the Health Innovation Subcommittee since its filing. On December 7, 2017, SB434 unanimously passed the Senate Subcommittee Recommendation and the bill was referred from Health Policy Committee to Appropriations Subcommittee on Health and Human Services.
SB 434 unanimously passed the Senate Appropriations Committee on January 31, 2018.
HB407 was Introduced in HJ47 on January 9, 2018.
HB 407 and SB 434 Indefinitely postponed and withdrawn from consideration on 03/10/2018
Click here to Track the Progress of SB 434:
Click here to Track the Progress of HB 407:
Click here to Read SB 434
Click here to Read HB 407:
CS/HB 1435 Child Welfare – “Requires DCF, in collaboration with sheriffs’ offices that conduct child protective investigations & community-based care lead agencies, to develop statewide family-finding program; requires community-based care lead agencies to establish kinship navigator programs; requires court to request that parents consent to providing access to additional records.” Introduced on January 9, 2018 and died in Children, Families and Seniors Subcommittee on January 31, 2018.
Law passed and signed by Governor on 03/23/2018, effective July 1, 2018.
Click here to review HB 1435 history