Navigation Links
New Legislation Seeks to Improve Access to Community Mental Healthcare
Date:10/18/2007

WASHINGTON, Oct. 18 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ --- The nation's mental health system was revitalized with the introduction of landmark legislation in the U.S. Senate yesterday to provide new resources and support for community-based care.

Senators Jack Reed (D-RI) and Gordon H. Smith (R-OR) introduced S. 2182, the Community Mental Health Services Improvement Act.

The National Council for Community Behavioral Healthcare, which championed the legislation, commends Senators Reed and Smith for their leadership in addressing the mental health needs of the American people. The National Council is the nation's association of community behavioral healthcare organizations and works to ensure that all those who have a mental illness can get effective and comprehensive treatment and rehabilitation in their communities.

"The introduction of this legislation in the Senate is an important milestone in helping the nation's community mental health system meet America's most pressing healthcare challenges today," said Linda Rosenberg, President and CEO of the National Council.

Mental illness in America is more common than cancer, diabetes, or even heart disease. Nearly 60 million people --- one in four adults and one in five children --- have a mental illness that can be diagnosed and treated. Yet the community mental health system --- the only point of care for a majority of people with mental illness --- has been chronically under-funded for many years and struggles to meet basic health needs in the face of low reimbursement rates, shrinking budgets, and workforce shortages.

"Mental illness is just as deadly and serious as a physical illness," said Senator Gordon H. Smith (R-OR). "While effective treatment exists for most people, access to care continues to be a challenge. A federal commitment is needed to ensure care is available when and where it is needed."

Among its main provisions, S. 2182 calls for funding to allow community mental health organizations to provide comprehensive primary care and specialty mental health services in the same setting.

"Only 32 percent of the nation's community mental health providers are able to afford the resources and staff they need to provide onsite medical treatment for hypertension, diabetes, obesity, and other medical conditions, according to a National Council survey," said Charles Ingoglia, the National Council's Vice President, Public Policy. "But it's ironic to address mental illnesses and let patients die from unattended medical conditions! We must treat the whole person and provide integrated mental and physical healthcare where it is easiest for patients to access."

The Community Mental Health Services Improvement Act also provides for innovative programs to address workforce needs in designated mental health professional shortage areas. The act calls for loan forgiveness and repayment as well as expanded education and training to support the recruitment and retention of qualified mental health workers, especially for racial and ethnic minorities.

"Mental health is hardly a lucrative profession. Years of inadequate funding for compensation and training programs have perpetrated a behavioral health workforce crisis!" said Linda Rosenberg. "It's a crisis we must resolve now if we are to continue to provide quality mental healthcare. We must be able to provide robust education programs and pay competitive salaries to attract and keep a skilled workforce. The Community Mental Health Services Improvement Act will go a long way to help," she noted.

S. 2182 also provides for grants to integrate treatment for individuals with a serious mental illness and co-occurring addiction disorders; to help the community mental health system improve information technology; and to establish facilities for tele-psychiatry and patient education in rural and other medically underserved areas.

The National Council for Community Behavioral Healthcare is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) association representing 1,300 mental health and addictions treatment and rehabilitation organizations that serve nearly six million adults, children, and families in communities across America. Learn more at http://www.TheNationalCouncil.org.


'/>"/>
SOURCE National Council for Community Behavioral Healthcare
Copyright©2007 PR Newswire.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. Doctors Seek Legislation To Protect Them
2. Spanish legislation Vote For Equality of sexes
3. China Issues New Legislation To Ban Human Organ Trade
4. Africa: Traditional Knowledge of Medicine Needs To Be Protected With Due Legislation
5. Legislation to Prevent Discrimination against HIV/AIDS Victims
6. Smartcard Legislation Fails The Privacy Test - AMA
7. AMA Urges Government To Amend Aged Care Legislation
8. US Lawmakers Considering Legislation to Restrict Payments by Drug Companies to Doctors
9. Consumer group seeks Sibutramine ban
10. Gujarat Seeks To Scale Down Infant Mortality Rate
11. Europe Seeks Indian Expertise
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... October 13, 2017 , ... The International Association ... standards of excellence for the field of eating disorders, announces the opening of ... 2018 in Orlando, Florida at the Omni Resort at ChampionsGate. , ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... LUIS OBISPO, Calif. (PRWEB) , ... October 13, 2017 , ... ... Alzheimer’s or dementia. However, many long-term care insurance companies have a waiver for care ... is the 90-day elimination period, when the family pays for care, is often waived, ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... October 13, 2017 , ... Talented ... the lowdown on sciatica in a new episode of "Success Files," which is ... events and innovation and investigates each subject in-depth with passion and integrity. , ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... CitiDent and San Francisco dentists, ... cutting-edge Oventus O2Vent technology. As many as 18 million Americans are estimated to ... breathing. Oral appliances can offer significant relief to about 75 percent of people ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... 12, 2017 , ... Asante, a nationally recognized health system ... their existing home health joint venture through an agreement, effective October 1, 2017, ... venture home health company with Asante, delivering clinically integrated care, for the past ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:10/2/2017)... 2, 2017  Eli Lilly and Company (NYSE: ... the third quarter of 2017 on Tuesday, October 24, ... that day with the investment community and media to ... conference call will begin at 9 a.m. Eastern time. ... live webcast of the conference call through a link ...
(Date:10/2/2017)... -- Halo Labs announces the European launch of their new low ... MIBio 2017 in Cambridge, U.K on October ... biopharmaceutical samples with unprecedented speed and sensitivity while using far less ... Imaging. ... analysis system ...
(Date:9/28/2017)... 2017 Hill-Rom Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: HRC), will ... and webcast on Friday, November 3, 2017, beginning at ... at approximately 8:30 a.m. (CDT) / 9:30 a.m. (EDT). ... financial performance and guidance for 2018, Hill-Rom executives will ... operational performance, and long-range financial outlook through 2020. ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: