State Health Updates
- California – Governor Gavin Newsom signed the Community Assistance, Recovery, and Empowerment Act to enact CARE Court, a framework which will provide more upstream care to individuals with severe mental health and substance use disorders. This will allow families, clinicians, and first responders to make psychiatric referrals ahead of conservatorships and outside the walls of institutions. The law is bolstered by the state’s $15.3 billion in funding to tackle homelessness and $11.6 billion annually in mental health services.
- Kansas – Governor Laura Kelly announced that Kansas has received $9 million in funding from the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration to address the behavioral health needs of nearly 40,000 students in the southeast part of the state. The funding will be spread out over five years, and will integrate school-based community health workers into the behavioral health support system for students and families in need.
- Kentucky – Governor Andy Beshear announced the Program of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly, or PACE, in Kentucky. The program is designed to provide quality, cost-effective, long-term care for people age 55 and older. At present, two providers—Bluegrass Care Navigators and Horizon PACE—have been certified through Kentucky’s PACE program, and the program is seeking more providers to expand the PACE service area.
- Michigan – The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) issued a call for proposals for the newly created MI Kids Now Mobile Response Grant Program. MDHHS is providing additional funding during fiscal year 2023 to expand Intensive Crisis Stabilization Services for Children. The purpose of the program is to expand access to mobile response teams to address crisis situations for youth who are experiencing emotional symptoms, behaviors or traumatic circumstances that have compromised or impacted their ability to function within their family, living situation, school/child care setting or community.
- New Mexico – The New Mexico Human Services Department (HSD) announced HSD clients now have the option to opt in to receive electronic notices about their benefits. This new tool provides New Mexicans with a single access point to receive and view important notices in their YesNM account. (leaguefeed.net) HSD customers are able to opt-in for e-notices by logging in or creating an account at the YesNM portal.
- New York – Governor Kathy Hochul announced $10.25 million in federal funding to bolster harm reduction and expand addiction services for underserved New Yorkers. Administered by the NY State Office of Addiction Services and Supports, $5.75 million is earmarked to support the development of mobile medication units, and $4.5 million is being awarded to help 15 providers establish street outreach units for engaging populations that have difficulty accessing care.
- Oklahoma – A task force created by Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt recommended that the state extend Medicaid postpartum coverage to 12 months from 60 days and increase the Medicaid eligibility income limit for pregnant woman to 205% of poverty. The current limit is 138%. Both policy changes will require CMS approval and would extend coverage to 2,500 women in the state.
- Oregon – The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), through CMS, approved the Oregon Health Authority’s (OHA) state plan amendment (SPA) to offer Medicaid community-based mobile crisis intervention services for individuals experiencing mental health and substance use crises. This first-in-the-nation SPA was made possible through the American Rescue Plan Act, which became available to states in April 2022. For more on this new option for states to invest in equitable, comprehensive and integrated crisis services, see this SHVS brief.
- West Virginia – Governor Jim Justice and the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources (DHHR) announced that due to the critical need for home healthcare workers, DHHR’s Medicaid program will designate additional federal funds to increase rates for Home and Community-Based Service (HCBS) providers. The increase in funding will help recruit and retain the workforce providing HCBS through programs including the Aged and Disabled Waiver, the Intellectual/Developmental Disabilities Waiver, and the Children with Serious Emotional Disorders Waiver. Pending CMS approval, DHHR’s Bureau for Medical Services expects the funds to be available in October 2022.