NASW Practice Alert: Advocating for Change in Home Health Care

Sep 18, 2009

Mirean Coleman, MSW, LICSW, CT
September 2009

NASW would like to hear from clinical social workers and others who have encountered problems in providing mental health services to Medicare beneficiaries who are actively receiving home health care services under Medicare Part A. The association is also seeking information about the impact of situations in which Medicare beneficiaries receiving home care services were unable to acquire or continue with mental health services provided by a clinical social worker.

Under the Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1989 (OBRA’89) (P.L. 101-239) clinical social workers are currently unable to seek reimbursement for services provided in a home health care setting because they are restricted to filing claims under Medicare Part B services. NASW is advocating for a change in federal statute or regulation that would allow Medicare beneficiaries receiving home health benefits to obtain or continue with mental health services provided by a clinical social worker. The association values members’ input in this process. Comments can be submitted online at psyhomecare@naswdc.org until November 20, 2009.

Visit www.socialworkers.org/practice/clinical for more information on Clinical Social Work.

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