IMD Legislation Introduced in House and Senate
Senate Delays Health Care Vote
The National Association is supporting legislation recently introduced in the US House of Representatives that eliminates the Medicaid Institutions for Mental Diseases (IMD) exclusion for patients with SUD. Currently, IMD exclusion prohibits the use of federal Medicaid financing for care provided to most patients in mental health and substance use disorder residential treatment facilities larger than 16 beds. The House bill allows Medicaid coverage for whatever length of time is best suited for the medical needs of the patient. The sixteen-bed limit is also removed.
Several US Senators have also introduced legislation making changes in the IMD exclusion. Their bill would provide for up to sixty days of treatment in facilities that have up to 40 beds. Their bill also creates a special funding mechanism for patients who are under 21 years old. It also increases access for pregnant and postpartum women.
NAATP has been part of a coalition supportive of making changes to the IMD exclusion. We are pleased that legislation has surfaced in both houses of Congress and we will continue to push for these important and necessary changes.
In other news, yesterday the US Senate announced that they would postpone the vote on their version of health care reform. They fell significantly short of having the necessary votes to move the bill forward. Moderate Republican Senators, as well as the most conservative, expressed displeasure with the proposed bill. Senate Leadership will be working over the next few weeks to garner the support of at least 50 Senators.
Please express your views on both the IMD exclusion issue and health care reform during the 4th of July recess when members will be home and meeting with constituents.
NAATP Director of Public Policy