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Introduced Version Senate Bill 672 History

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Senate Bill No. 672

(By Senators Kessler, Helmick, McCabe, Prezioso, Plymale, Stollings, Jenkins, Minard, Unger and Wells)

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[Introduced March 23, 2009; referred to the Committee on Finance; and then to the Committee on Rules.]

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A BILL to amend the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, by adding thereto a new article, designated §4-9-1, §4-9-2 and §4-9-3; and to amend said code by adding thereto a new section, designated §9-2-9a, all relating generally to mental health; creating special Joint Committee on Mental Health; committee's composition and duties; requiring agencies to cooperate with committee; requiring review of mental health rate increases; providing for Mental Health Stabilization Act of 2009; making legislative findings; increasing reimbursement rates in mental health service codes; requiring periodic reports to Joint Committee on Government and Finance; and providing an implementation date and a termination date.

Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
That the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, be amended by adding thereto a new article, designated §4-9-1, §4-9-2 and §4-9-3; and to amend said code by adding thereto a new section, designated §9-2-9a, all to read as follows:
CHAPTER 4. THE LEGISLATURE.

ARTICLE 9. SPECIAL JOINT COMMITTEE ON MENTAL HEALTH.
§4-9-1. Creation of special joint committee on mental health; duties.

(a) There is hereby created a special Joint Committee of the Legislature on Mental Health which shall have eight members. The committee shall be composed of four members of the Senate and four members of the House of Delegates. Members shall be the chairs of their respective judiciary committees, health committees, finance committees and the minority leaders of each chamber. The cochairs of the committee on mental health shall be the chairs of the standing Judiciary Committee of each chamber.
(b) The committee shall:
(1) Conduct an inventory of available mental health services in West Virginia;
(2) Review consultants reports and correspondence paid for by the state over the last sixty months in regard to mental health and substance abuse issues;
(3) Examine the historical relationship of the availability of community mental health services to the level of mental health involuntary commitments;
(4) Examine the current conditions of state hospitals and other state facilities that provide services to people with mental health needs;
(5) Review the funding stream for mental health services in West Virginia;
(6) Examine the impact mental health has on persons housed in regional jail and correctional facilities and on the cost thereof to counties and municipalities;
(7) Examine the impact mental health has on homeless persons;
(8) Examine the cost to the counties and municipalities in terms of law enforcement due to inadequate mental health services;
(9) Examine any other area or areas that the committee feels will better solve the crisis in mental health;
(10) Review ways to increase the use of technology in the delivery of mental health services including, but not limited to, the use of electronic health records;
(11) Review the current funding mechanisms for mental health service in West Virginia and determine whether the state is maximizing its funding opportunities for the needed mental health services;
(12) Review the mental hygiene process and underlying standards;
(13) Compare West Virginia's mental health system with other similar situated states; and
(14) Develop recommendations that will improve the care for those with mental health needs and recommend legislation to the Joint Committee on Government and Finance.
§4-9-2. State agencies to cooperate with committee.
All state agencies shall cooperate with the special Joint Committee and shall within fifteen working days respond to all information and data requests. The committee may require various agencies to provide monthly reports that will assist the committee in the monitoring of current state activities. If approved by the chairs of the committee, unannounced inspections of state facilities may be conducted to determine the condition of the facility and the well being of the patients. Members conducting inspections shall receive Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPPA) training and shall be subject to the laws governing patient confidentiality.
§4-9-3. Review of mental health rate increases.
The committee shall monitor the impact of the emergency rate increase as provided by section nine-a, article two, chapter nine of this code. The committee will also review the actions of the Department of Health and Human Resources to determine if the indicated rate increases are being put into effect. In addition the committee shall review any new care management, utilization management or prior authorization initiatives by Department of Health and Human Resources to ensure they are in the spirit of this article.
CHAPTER 9. HUMAN SERVICES.

ARTICLE 2. DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN RESOURCES, AND OFFICE OF
COMMISSIONER OF HUMAN SERVICES; POWERS, DUTIES AND
RESPONSIBILITIES GENERALLY.
§9-2-9a. Mental Health Stabilization Act of 2009.
(a) Legislative findings. -- The Legislature hereby finds and declares:
(1) The West Virginia community mental health system is in a state of crisis. There are not sufficient community resources to meet the needs of the state's population.
(2) It is the public policy of West Virginia that the state should have a mental health system that provides a continuum of care for people with mental health needs. This continuum may include preventive and primary mental health services, peer supports, community supports, group homes, case management, crisis intervention services, and an appropriate number of hospital beds. There is also recognition that the state has limited financial resources.
(3) The state has been the subject of various court orders as result of the manner in which it dealt with people with mental health needs, the Legislature desires to be proactive and resolve issues surrounding mental illness without the intervention of the courts.
(4) The current rate of involuntary mental health commitments and the incarcerations of people with mental health needs are at a level that is utilizing significant state resources. The resources could be used in the provision of community mental health services in a way that improves clinical outcomes and more efficiently utilizes the state's limited resources. The result should be a reduction in the level of involuntary commitments and incarceration for those people with mental health needs.
(b) To the maximum full extent of additional appropriations in the fiscal year that begins July 1, 2009, and in any fiscal year thereafter, and of federal participation dollars and subject to provisions of state and federal laws and regulations, the secretary, in addition to all other powers, duties and responsibilities granted and assigned to that office in this chapter and elsewhere by law, shall increase proportionally across the board the reimbursement rates for behavioral health clinic and rehabilitation services in the following service codes in order to help stabilize the mental health system which is in crisis:
Service Description
Service Code

Mental Health Assessment by Nonphysician
H0031,

Mental Health Service Plan Development
T1017,

Mental Health Service Plan Development
H0032,

Mental Health Service Plan Development (Home base)
H0032,

Mental Health Service Plan Development by Psychologist
H0032 AH,

Physician Coordinated Care Oversight Services
G9008,

Behavioral Health Counseling, Professional, Individual
H0004 H0,

Behavioral Health Counseling, Professional,
Individual (Home Based)
H0004 H0,

Behavioral Health Counseling, Professional, Group
H0004 H0HQ,

Behavioral Health Counseling, Supportive, Individual
H0004,

Behavioral Health Counseling, Supportive,
Individual (Home Based)
H0004,

Behavioral Health Counseling, Supportive, Group
H0004 HQ,

Skills Training and Development 1:1 by Paraprofessional
H2014 U4,

Skills Training and Development 1:1 by
Paraprofessional (Home Based)
H2014 U4,

Skills Training and Development 1:2-4 by
Paraprofessional
H2014 U1,

Skills Training and Development 1:1 by
Paraprofessional
H2014 HN U4,

Skills Training and Development 1:1 by
Professional (Home Based)
H2014 HN U4,

Skills Training and Development 1:2-4 by
Professional
H2014 HN U1,

Skills Training and Development 1:2-4 by
Professional (Home Based)
H2014 HN U1,

Therapeutic Behavioral Health Services -
Development
H2019 HO,

Therapeutic Behavioral Services - Development (Home Based)
H2019 HO,

Therapeutic Behavioral Services - Implementation
H2019,

Therapeutic Behavioral Services -
Implementation (Home Based)
H2019,

Crisis Intervention
H2011,

Crisis Intervention (Home Based)
H2011,

Comprehensive Community Support
Services Tx Ratio 1:12
H2015 U1,

Comprehensive Community Support
Services Tx Ratio 1:8
H2015 U2,

Comprehensive Community Support
Services (structured program 1:1)
H2014 U1,

Crisis Stabilization - Community Psychiatric
Supportive Treatment
H0036,

ACT (daily rate)
H0040,

Daily Treatment
H2012,

Comprehensive Medication Services Mental Health
H2010.

(c) This section does not preclude any other rate increase authorized by law.
(d) The secretary shall provide a written report monthly to the Joint Committee on Government and Finance created by section one, article three, chapter four of this code, on the development and implementation of the provisions of this section until they have been fully implemented.
(e) The provisions of this section shall be implemented by July 1, 2009, or ninety days after the budget is enacted for the fiscal year beginning July 1, 2009, whichever occurs last. This section shall expire and be of no further effect beginning July 1, 2013.



NOTE: The purpose of this bill is to
create a special joint committee on mental health. The bill sets forth its composition and duties. The bill requires agencies to cooperate with the committee and requires the review of mental health rate increases. The bill also creates the Mental Health Stabilization Act of 2009, including making legislative findings, increases reimbursement rates in mental health service codes, requires periodic reports to Joint Committee on Government and Finance. The bill also provides an implementation date and a termination date.

These sections are new; therefore, strike-throughs and underscoring have been omitted.
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