News from NASADAD
- NASADAD attends briefing on enhancing access to healthcare among minority and low-income communities
- NASADAD attends briefing on prescriber preparation for opioid crisis
- NASADAD attends Alliance for Health Reform briefing on home and community-based care services
Around the Agencies
- CMS releases EHR reporting period final rule
In the News
- Parental substance use disorders drive growth in number of children in foster care
- AMA Task Force releases report for increasing access to naloxone
- Kelly Ayotte requests study of implementation and enforcement of the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act
- Governing magazine releases story on challenges facing State Medicaid programs
- ASAM announces webinars discussing evidence-based clinical treatment of opioid use disorders
News from NASADAD
NASADAD attends briefing on enhancing access to healthcare among minority and low-income communities
Brian Denten, Public Policy Intern, attended the event hosted by the National Journal on Thursday, October 9th. Two panels of individuals working in the healthcare industry spoke about healthcare access among minority and low-income communities. Despite the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) expansion of healthcare coverage, many newly insured remain unclear on how to access and utilize health insurance. Panelists discussed the importance of telehealth in disseminating information to minority and low-income communities about where and how to receive healthcare, stating that many people still rely on emergency departments as their primary source of healthcare. Several panelists emphasized cultural competency among medical professionals as essential in improving healthcare outcomes. Speakers further asserted the need for greater continuity of care within the healthcare system for treating the newly insured.
- Nadine Gracia, M.D.; Deputy Assistant Secretary and Director, Office of Minority Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
- Georges Benjamin, M.D.; Executive Director, American Public Health Association
- Patrice Harris, M.D.; Chair-Elect, American Medical Association
- Justine Handelman; Vice President of Legislative and Regulatory Policy, Blue Cross Blue Shield Association
- Seiji Hayashi, M.D.; Executive Vice President for Transportation and Innovation, Practicing Physician, Unity Health Care
- McCrae Parker; Managing Director, Zero Divide
- Ruth Perot; Executive Director and CEO, Summit Health Institute for Research and Education (SHIRE)
- Ramanathan Raju, M.D.; President and CEO, New York City Health and Hospitals Corporation
- Diane Rowland; Executive Vice President, Kaiser Family Foundation
- Michael Scott; Chief Equity Officer, President, and Co-Founder, Equity Matters
NASADAD attends briefing on prescriber preparation for opioid crisis
Robert Morrison, Executive Director, and Shalini Wickramatilake-Templeman, Public Policy Associate, attended the briefing sponsored by the Hazelden Betty Ford Institute for Recovery Advocacy and National Council for Behavioral Health on Tuesday, October 6th. Speakers, including members of Congress, discussed the increasing prescription opioid and heroin problem in the United States. In particular, speakers emphasized the importance of prescriber education in the prevention of opioid use disorders.
- Kelly Ayotte (R-NH)
- Shelley Moore Capito (D-WV)
- Mary Bono, Principal, FaegreBD Consulting
- Michael Botticelli, Director, Office of National Drug Control Policy
- Joe Manchin (D-WV)
- Edward Markey (D-MA)
- Mehmet Oz; Host of The Dr. Oz Show
- Mackenzie Phillips; Actress and Person in Long-Term Recovery from an Opioid Use Disorder
- Dr. Marvin Seppala; Chief Medical Officer, Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation
- Dr. Jeannie Sperry; Adult Pain Rehabilitation Clinical Director, Mayo Clinic
- John Tilley; Kentucky House of Representatives
NASADAD attends Alliance for Health Reform briefing on home and community-based care services
Brian Denten, Public Policy Intern, attended the briefing sponsored by the Alliance for Health Reform. Several panelists working to identify ways to improve the provision of home and community-based healthcare services spoke at the event. As the United States’ population continues to age, home and community-based caretaker services for the elderly will become an increasingly large percentage of healthcare costs. Institutional solutions for the elderly, such as nursing homes, have trended downwards since the late 1990s, with home and community-based services making up the largest percentage of Medicaid long-term care expenditures in 2013. Several panelists discussed methods for improving the quality of long term-services and support (LTSS), including increasing affordability and access, increasing the amount of providers to choose from, increasing quality of life and care, and providing additional support for family caregivers.
- Anne Montgomery; Altarum Institute
- Bea-Alise Rector; Department of Social and Health Services, Washington State
- Abby Marquand; Paraprofessional Healthcare Institute (PHI)
- Jean Accius; AARP
Around the Agencies
CMS releases EHR reporting period final rule
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released a final rule for the Medicare and Medicaid Electronic Health Records Incentive Programs in 2015 (EHR) this past week. The rule adjusts the EHR reporting period to 90 days in order to align with the remainder of the calendar year. The rule further includes additional measures including “reducing the share of patients that must use the patient portal from 5% to at least one patient, and modifying the summary care requirements.”
In the News
Parental substance use disorders drive growth in number of children in foster care
Parents with substance use disorders are a major cause for the increase of children in foster care services, according to a new article by Pew Charitable Trusts. The number of children living in foster care began to increase in 2013, after years of decline. 415,000 children were living in foster care in 2014 according to an Administration for Children and Families (ACF) report, many as a result of their parents’ substance use disorders. Ohio saw a 19 percent increase from 2010 to 2013 in the percentage of child welfare cases involving heroin or cocaine, with seventy percent of children less than a year old in foster care as a result of parents using drugs. Similar trends were observed in Indiana and Vermont. Child welfare cases involving drug addiction present unique challenges, as many parents have difficulty recovering from their substance use disorder in the time allotted by federal law to reunite with their children.
AMA Task Force releases report for increasing access to naloxone
The American Medical Association (AMA) Task Force to Reduce Opioid Abuse issued a new report compiling resources for States and physicians to consider when increasing access to naloxone this past week. The report includes several webinars and overdose prevention resources from a variety of organizations, including the Harm Reduction Coalition and the American Academy of Addiction Psychiatry. One of the AMA Task Force’s primary goals is the encouragement of physicians to “co-prescribe naloxone to a patient or prescribe naloxone to a family member or close friend when it is clinically appropriate.” The report also provides an overview of naloxone laws in States across the country.
Sen. Kelly Ayotte requests study of implementation and enforcement of the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act
Senator Kelly Ayotte (R-NH) requested a study of the implementation and enforcement of the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act (MHPAEA) of 2008 in a letter to the head of the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) last week. Despite going into effect in January 2014, implementation of mental health parity has proven difficult, as many individuals continue to report denial of coverage for substance use disorder treatment by health insurance companies. In the letter, Sen. Ayotte expresses her concern that large barriers to accessing treatment for substance use disorders remain despite the passage of the law, and suggests the GAO review insurance company compliance with mental health parity.
Governing magazine releases story on challenges facing State Medicaid programs
Governing magazine released a story on the challenges facing State Medicaid programs last week, featuring commentary from several State Medicaid Directors on the current status of Medicaid. Medicaid programs have grown substantially in recent years, yet State Medicaid Directors assert that they have not been given extra resources—such as more administrative positions, salary increases, and more technical assistance—to handle the increased capacity. Matt Salo, Director of the National Association of Medicaid Directors, states that Medicaid’s role has evolved from being “bill payer” to having a number of new responsibilities. Many States do not consider Medicaid a separate agency, and include Medicaid programs within larger agencies such as health and human services.
ASAM announces webinars discussing evidence-based clinical treatment of opioid use disorders
The American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) has announced a series of webinars discussing evidence-based clinical treatment of opioid use disorders to be held throughout the remainder of 2015. These webinars will discuss recommendations from the new ASAM National Practice Guideline for physicians treating patients with opioid use disorders, including the primary components of patient assessment and diagnosis, the use of pharmacotherapy (including buprenorphine, methadone, naltrexone, and naloxone), and the needs of special populations (including pregnant women, adolescents, and individuals within the criminal justice system). The webinars will be held on Wednesday, October 28 at 3PM EST; Tuesday, November 17 at 12PM EST; and Thursday, December 10 at 12PM EST.
Should you have any questions, or require additional information, please do not hesitate to contact Robert Morrison, Executive Director, (202) 293-0090 or Shalini Wickramatilake-Templeman, Public Policy Associate, at (202) 293-0090.