Legislative Update – First Funnel

Under the Golden Dome

This week marked the first funnel deadline.  A bill has to advance through a committee in either chamber to remain alive for further consideration.  This does not apply to budget or tax bills, and of course, nothing is ever actually dead until the end of the legislative session.   The next funnel deadline is March 18 by which time a bill has to pass one chamber and a committee in another chamber.  This is a good clue to what the majority party’s priorities are for this legislative session.

Your advocacy is important to help advance our agenda.  Please save the date – IMHCA Day on the Hill is scheduled for March 7!


Bills Surviving the First Funnel Deadline

HF 2137:  The original bill created a prescribing mental health provider loan repayment program.  The bill was amended in House Human Resources Committee to add language to include a non-prescribing mental health provider loan repayment program.  The amendment also included an additional $500,000 to fund the program.  IMHCA will register in support of the bill when it is introduced with a new number.  We are not currently registered on HSB 513 as it didn’t originally apply to us.


HF 2167:  Clarifies that autism is a mental health condition by aligning state and federal definitions.  The bill passed the House Human Resources Committee.  IMHCA is registered in support of the bill.


HF 2200/SF 2276:  These bills expand current statutory authority to establish a direct healthcare agreement between any licensed healthcare provider and a patient.  Current law only allows that to occur between a primary care provider and a patient.   A direct healthcare agreement means that the provider agrees to provide specific services to the patient for a specified time and for a service charge.  The bills were approved by the  House Human Resources Committee and the Senate Commerce Committee.  IMHCA is registered as undecided.


HF 2245:  Prohibits insurance companies from denying coverage for an out-of state mental health provider who is licensed to practice in Iowa and met the same criteria for licensure as those who practice in the state.    The bill passed the House Human Resources Committee.  IMHCA is registered in support of the bill.


HF 2310:  Requires Medicaid to cover functional family therapy and multisystemic therapy for youth.  The bill passed the House Human Resources Committee. IMHCA is registered in support of the bill.


HF 2386:  This bill would allow the release of psychological test materials to the opposing counsel if the litigation included a question of the individual’s cognitive ability.   This provides an open door to making it easier to get all mental health records during litigation.  The bill was approved by the House Judiciary Committee.  IMHCA is registered opposed.


HF 2399:  This bill prohibits revoking a prior authorization when reimbursement is submitted and requires that a prior authorization is valid for at least ninety days.   The bill passed the House Human Resources Committee.  IMHCA is registered in support.


HF 2416/SF 2342:  These bills prohibit schools, community colleges, private colleges and regents institutions from allowing transgender girls from participating in girls sports.  The bills passed their respective chambers Education Committees.  IMHCA is registered opposed.


SF 2195: Creates a mental health provider loan repayment program for individuals who agree to serve in a mental health shortage area for five years.  To qualify, you must have graduated from a recognized program in Iowa and be licensed to practice in Iowa.  The definition of a mental health provider is tied to those without prescriptive authority in 228.1 (defines mental health provider).  Successful applicants would receive up to $8,000 for each of the five years.  The appropriations request is for $520,000 to fund 13 positions.  This bill passed the Senate Education Committee.  IMHCA is registered in support.


SF 2307:  Eliminates independent verification of college transcripts for licensure in Iowa.  The bill was approved by the Senate State Government Committee.   IMHCA is registered neutral on the bill.


SF 2354:  Extends Medicaid coverage for post-partum support for up to one year after birth.  The bill passed the Senate Human Resources Committee.  IMHCA is registered in support.


Bills That Died

HSB 564:  This bill allows the state office of the ombudsman to procure AND release confidential records as part of its investigation into a state agency or board.


HF 2134:  This bill prohibits non-compete agreements that would place limits on an employees ability to work for a different employer within a specified amount of time; working for a different employer in a specified geographical area or working for a different employer who is similar to the employee’s work with the current employer.


HF 2225:  This bill merges the boards of behavioral science and the social work.


SSB 3054: Requires disclosure of psychological test material in certain civil cases.