The American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) was signed into law on March 11, 2021 as a signature effort to assist in the recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic and the related economic downturn. Included as part of the sweeping legislation is a program to fully subsidize COBRA coverage for six months starting in April of 2021. This expert perspective provides a short overview of COBRA and mini-COBRA, the major elements of the ARPA COBRA Assistance program, and considerations for state policymakers related to the program.
Integrating Physical and Behavioral Health: Strategies for Overcoming Legal Barriers to Health Information Exchange
Manatt, Phelps & Phillips—Robert Belfort, William Bernstein, and Susan Ingargiola
This brief explores the strategies states use to address barriers that impede data-sharing efforts among providers to integrate physical and behavioral health care. The first step for states interested in more and better data exchange is to understand legal barriers to sharing such data and to directly confront misperceptions about those barriers withproviders, health plans, and other stakeholders.
The webinar based on this issue brief explains the legal barriers to sharing behavioral and physical health care information, dispels misconceptions about those barriers, and recommends strategies to reduce real barriers where they exist. effective care coordination requires robust data exchange among physical and behavioral health providers, who are often reluctant to freely share data for fear of violating health information privacy laws. State officials with experience integrating physical and behavioral health care in their states also offer insight.