Improving Access to Mental Health Act (H.R 2035/ S. 870)
The Senate Finance Committee (SFC) released its mental health workforce discussion draft component of its mental health legislative package (read a summary). We are pleased to report two of three provisions of the Improving Access to Mental Health Act are included in section 12 of the discussion draft. These provisions include allowing clinical social workers to provide Part B services to residents of skilled nursing facilities and allowing clinical social workers to bill for Health and Behavior Assessment and Intervention Services.
We have taken an array of actions to influence what provisions were included in the SFC bills, including the following letters. We also mobilized National Association of Social Workers (NASW) Chapters and members and worked in coalition with other organizations.
- NASW Provides Recommendations to Senators Wyden and Crapo’s Request for Policy Proposals to Address Unmet Mental Health Needs (Nov. 15, 2021)
- NASW’s provides recommendations to Senators Murphy and Cassidy in response to a Request for Stakeholder Input Regarding Federal Mental Health and Substance Use Disorder Programs (Nov. 5, 2021)
- NASW provides Recommendations to Senators Bennet and Cornyn for Achieving the Aims of “A Bold Vision for America’s Mental Well-being” (Oct. 8, 2021)
We wish to thank NASW leadership and members for their continued advocacy that contributed to these important developments to advance access to care and to strengthen the social work workforce. We will continue to provide regular updates as the Senate continues to develop its comprehensive mental health and Substance Use Disorder legislation and will call on you to help ensure that these important provisions are enacted into law.