Weekly Wrap-Up
January 22, 2021


Peer Support Services

In September of 2020, Senate Bill (SB) 803 (Beall, Chapter 150, Statues of 2020) was chaptered, requiring DHCS to seek federal approval to establish Peer Specialist as a provider type and to provide distinct peer support services under the SMHS and DMC-ODS programs. While services provided by peers can currently be claimed under the provider type "other qualified provider" within the SMHS program, and recovery services provided by peers can be claimed within the DMC-ODS programs, DHCS is proposing to add peers as a unique provider type within specific reimbursable services and to allow counties to opt-in to provide this valuable resource. By July 1, 2021, DHCS will determine the peer certification standards in alignment with the provisions SB 803 (Beall, Chapter 150, Statutes of 2020), and in accordance within CMS' guidance, have the new benefit in place by January 1, 2022.

Wiener - New Mental Health Caucus Chair; Introduces Bill to Stop Unnecessary Intersex Surgeries

As Caucus Chair, Wiener will continue focusing on destigmatizing and increasing treatment options for mental health issues and substance use disorder, and on implementing harm reduction measures - like overdose prevention programs - to help people who are struggling with addiction be safer and access treatment and services. He has introduced three bills in this legislative session focused on mental health and substance use disorder.

California for All Ages: Why a Master Plan for Aging?
Aging is changing and it's changing California. California's over-6o population is projected to diversify and grow faster than any other age group. By 2030, 10.8 million Californians will be an older adult, making up one-quarter of the state's population.

Leadership Series: Mental Health Policy in 2021
Three mental health experts joined State of Reform on Thursday for a conversation on mental health policy in 2021 as part of our virtual "Leadership Series." Joining the conversation was Thomas Insel, MD, Mental Health Czar at the Office of California Gov. Gavin Newsom, Susan Mims, MD, Interim CEO at Dogwood Health Trust, and Andy Keller, PhD, CEO at Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute.

Annual Report Available

The Council of Criminal Justice and Behavioral Health's 19th Annual Legislative Report is now available.

Virtual Events

Wednesday, January 27, 2021
12:00 p.m. Pacific Time
Webinar:  Youth in Distress: Structural, Social Factors Related to Mental Health of California Adolescents
Nearly one in three California adolescents, ages 12-17, reported having serious psychological distress, according to a new study that uses California Health Interview Survey (CHIS) data.
But who is the most vulnerable and what impact do social and structural factors have on the mental health of adolescents?

Thursday, January 28, 2021
2:15 p.m. Eastern Time, 11:15 a.m. Pacific Time
Webinar:  Beyond Loneliness and Social Isolation: The Importance of Connectedness
Join MHA for a 2.5 hour live event on loneliness and social isolation where we will begin with subject matter experts discussing the science of loneliness and social isolation and the benefits of addressing it. The program will also focus on solutions to the self-isolation and loneliness crisis.


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