Medicare Reimbursement for LMHC’s and MFT’s
We are closer than ever to getting this law passed!
We Need Your Help!
On Wednesday, November 15, 2017, the entire mental health counselor community is uniting through social media outreach, combined with calls, to U.S. Senate and House offices, to build support for and pass S. 1879 / H.R. 3032 into law. We need your help to pressure your Representatives to support the Seniors Mental Health Access Improvement Act!
ABOUT THE SENIORS MENTAL HEALTH ACCESS IMPROVEMENT ACT
If passed by the U.S. Congress, the Seniors Mental Health Access Improvement Act (S. 1879/HR 3032) would include licensed mental health counselors and marriage and family therapists as eligible recipients of Medicare funding.
Join all Mental Health Counselors across the country in a Call-In Action Day to bolster Congressional support for the Seniors Mental Health Access Improvement Act (S. 1879/HR 3032). Please call your Senators and Representatives about this bill on November 15th!
Iowa’s Representatives in Congress:
Here is a link to find your representative in the House: https://www.house.gov/representatives/find/
Facebook Handle: @senjoniernst
Twitter Handle: @joniernst
Facebook Handle: @grassley
Twitter Handle: @ChuckGrassley
Make sure you contact Senator Charles Grassley, since he sits on the Senate Finance Committee!
We also encourage you to use social media on November 15th to advocate. See specific talking points for the phone call below, and suggestions for using Facebook and Twitter to advocate.
HOW YOU CAN HELP
MOST EFFECTIVE WAY TO ADVOCATE—CALLS
Taking only 3 minutes out of your day, use the script below and call your Senators and Representatives. Research shows that Representatives receiving a large number of calls makes an immediate impact on the office and encourages support.
Hello, my name is [NAME], and I am a constituent and a mental health counselor from [CITY, STATE]. I’m calling to ask the SENATOR/ REPRESENTATIVE [NAME] to support the Seniors Mental Health Access Improvement Act (S. 1879/HR 3032).
Studies show that 730,000 Seniors on Medicare are at risk for opioid addiction, and the incidence of alcohol abuse among the elderly has doubled. However, there’s a shortage of mental health and substance abuse providers in the Medicare system! This bill would allow cost-effective providers like myself to treat these seniors under Medicare, and help do our part in addressing the opioid epidemic.
[Give a short example about a senior you know who needed substance abuse treatment who couldn’t get it or a personal story of how a mental health counselor can make an impact.]
Hope to have your boss’ support!
TWEET AT YOUR REPRESENTATIVE
@YourSenator or Rep: I’m a constituent from [City] and studies show 730 thousand Seniors on Medicare are at risk for opioid addiction. We need more mental health counselors to help treat Seniors. #SeniorsNeedMHCounselors!
@YourSenatorOrRep I’m a constituent from [City] and there’s a shortage of Medicare mental health/addiction providers. Please sign on to S. 1879/HR 3032 #SeniorsNeedMHCounselors
@SenatorX, I am a constituent from [City] and a mental health counselor. There’s a shortage of mental health and substance abuse providers in the Medicare system, despite an increase in mental health and addiction disor- ders amongst seniors. Please sign-on to the Seniors Mental Health Access Improvement Act to increase seniors access to cost-effective mental health counselors and save lives. #SeniorsNeedMHCounselors
@RepX, I am from [City] and your constituent. Research shows that the incidence of substance use and mental health disorder increases in elderly populations. We need licensed mental health counselors available to address this issue in a cost-effective manner. I ask you to support the Seniors Mental Health Access Improvement Act because #SeniorsNeedMHCounselors.
Clinical Mental Health Counselors are well qualified to provide covered mental health benefits. All fifty states license CMHCs to diagnose and treat mental health disorders. Medicare beneficiaries need more MH services, particularly in rural and underserved areas. CMHCs are trained to serve these populations and are geographically accessible. The time has come to give all Medicare beneficiaries access to a qualified professional by recognizing CMHCs in the Medicare program. Congress should pass HR 3032 recognizing Clinical Mental Health Counselors as covered Medicare providers.
Mental Health Access Improvement Act of 2017
This bill amends title XVIII (Medicare) of the Social Security Act to: (1) cover marriage and family therapist services and mental health counselor services under Medicare, (2) exclude such services from the skilled nursing facility prospective payment system, and (3) authorize marriage and family therapists and mental health counselors to develop discharge plans for post-hospital services.
More information about the bill in Congress:
More information about the bill in the Senate:
Read the Bill in Congress: (H.R. 3032)
Read the Bill in the Senate: (S. 1879)