Wednesday, February 25, 2009

From the Children's Mental Health Campaign

Save The Date: CMHC Meeting
Tuesday, March 17 from 9:30-11 AM
Please join us for the next Children's Mental Health Campaign supporters meeting on Tuesday, March 17 from 9:30-11 AM in the 9th floor conference room at 30 Winter Street.  Even with the passage and enactment of Chapter 321 last session, the work of the Campaign has not slowed down.  At this meeting, we will discuss the implementation of the new law, legislative and budget strategy for the next several months, and other issues to monitor related to children's mental health.  Also at this meeting, Susan Stelk, director of the EOHHS Integrated Comprehensive Resources in Schools project, will present on the Department's work on mental health resources for children in school settings 

Your involvement in these meetings is important.  We have assembled a strong group of individuals and organizations, and our collective knowledge and experience will be key to making lasting systems reforms.
Please join us on March 17. 

FY 2010 Budget and Children's Mental Health

These remain difficult economic times in Massachusetts and these difficulties were reflected in Governor Patrick's FY 2010 budget proposal.  Of particular concern for children's mental health is a proposed $3 million cut in the Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services line item (5042-5000) According to analysis by the Mental Health and Substance Abuse Corporations of Massachusetts, this cut represents the annualization of the 9C cuts that were made to the line item last year.  The Department of Mental Health does not expect to make additional cuts in community services for this population.   Especially in light of the current financial crisis, the Children's Mental Health Campaign will continue to advocate for adequate funding for children with mental health needs.  Regardless of the budget situation, these young people continue to have needs that must be addressed. 

CMHC State House Operations
As you know, there have been many changes at the State House in the past several weeks.  In addition to a new Speaker, Representative Liz Malia and Senator Jen Flanagan have been tapped to lead the Mental Health and Substance Abuse Committee. 
This session, the Campaign is supporting legislation sponsored by Representative Ruth Balser and Senator Steven Tolman that would establish reimbusement under private insurance for collateral contacts by mental health clinicians.  (House Docket No. 1439 / Senate Docket No. 905)
Click here for an updated fact sheet on the Collateral Contacts legislation. 
Thanks to the work of the Campaign, we managed to secure 50 cosponsors on this bill. 
Click here to see who signed on. 
If you have any questions, please contact Matt Noyes, Children's Health Coordinator at Health Care For All. 

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