Next week, the Legislature will hear a series of bills that could create pathways for increased behavioral health care support. There are two hearings in particular that we are watching closely and hope to make a difference at:
Monday, April 12 at 1:00 PM
LD #592 – An Act to Ensure Access to Outpatient Mental Health Services by Increasing Reimbursement for Outpatient Therapists
It is not a secret that there is a workforce shortage in the mental health field even the most basic mental health services have seen a decline in providers in recent years. The pandemic has contributed to growing waitlists while pay rates have been stagnant for years. Immediate investment will allow us to begin staffing up agencies again. While the current rate evaluation that has been conducted by the department is good for moving forward, it does not address services that are in crisis today.
LD #1147 – Resolve to Enhance Access to Medication Management for Individuals with Serious and Persistent Mental Illness
Access to medication management helps stabilize people struggling with mental illness decreasing the need for costly emergency department visits or the potential for incarceration in the state’s corrections system. This bill will increase rates for medication management responding to the increased demand and complex need and requires the department to amend its rules governing medication management services. In response to increased demand and complexity of need.
Thursday, April 15 at 1:00 PM
LD #196 – Resolve, to Ensure Access to Community Mental Health Services
This bill would increase reimbursement rates for daily living support services and any home and community-based services provided by behavioral health professionals. Our goal is always to see access to pivotal mental health care services increase. This bill would help address our significant workforce issues.
LD #582 – An Act to Support The Fidelity and Sustainability of Assertive Community Treatment
Assertive Community Treatment (ACT) is a practice that improves outcomes for people with severe mental illness at risk of psychiatric crisis and hospitalization as well as involvement in the criminal justice system. ACT treatments are one of the most widely researched evidence-based practices in behavioral healthcare for people with severe mental illness. This bill would increase MaineCare reimbursement rates for ACT treatment and modify the definition of “assertive community treatment” to better align with an evidence-based treatment model.
At The Alliance, we believe in improving behavioral healthcare access.
Join us in Giving Virtual Testimony
Our Advocacy Toolkit: Pandemic Edition has the most helpful information we could find about how to do this and you can register and submit your testimony electronically
If you cannot testify during the hearing and would like to, let us know and we will help submit your testimony in advance.
Submit a Letter to the Editor
We can help you share your story in a letter to the editor. Email us here to do that.
Send a Message Directly to your Legislator
If your legislators are among the bill sponsors or sit on the Committee on Health and Human Services Committee, tell them you support these bills. Find your legislators and their contact information, including email, HERE.