Proposed MH/SA Access to Care Criteria Sets a Higher Standard
NC DHHS recently posted its latest Medicaid Transformation concept paper focused on the Standard Plan access to care and network adequacy standards. The paper does not outline standards for the Tailored Plan. The difference between the current access to care standards under the Medicaid (b)(c) waiver and the proposed requirements under the Standard Plan are that the proposed access to care standards will require a quicker response by providers in the network.
NC Governor Roy Cooper announced the release of the second half of $31 million in NC Opioid Crisis Grant funds received as part of the 21st Century Cures Act will begin this Spring. NC DHHS will conduct a competitive awards process to support community projects that advance the
State's Opioid Action Plan.
In May of 2017, $15.5 million was released to LME/MCOs to increase prevention, treatment, outreach, recovery supports, and reduce unmet needs while decreasing deaths and overdoses. Some of the most visible efforts related to the use of these dollars included the distribution of NARCAN Opioid Overdose Kits to save the lives of individuals experiencing an opioid overdose.
Family First Prevention Act Aimed at Preventing Foster Care Placement
A significant piece of legislation - the
Family First Prevention Services Act (FFPSA) - aimed at preventing high risk children from entering foster care - was included in the short term budget bill recently passed by Congress. This legislation changes how states can use Title IV-E money, typically used for foster care payments and adoption assistance. The funds can now go toward services to prevent children from entering the foster care system. The act allows states to use Title IV-E funds to provide up to 12 months of mental health services, addiction treatment or in-home parent skill training with the goal of keeping children with their parents or biological relatives.
The new law is financed through limiting federal payments for congregate care (residential treatment, PRTF etc.) and delaying the expansion of certain federal adoption subsidies. It is too early to know the specifics of how these new funds might be utilized in NC.
Open Minds Survey on Value Based Reimbursement
Open Minds recently released a Performance Management Executive Survey: Where Are We On the Road to Value? It was a national survey of specialty provider organizations on their experience with value based reimbursement (VBR). The survey results revealed that VBR arrangements are increasing, but slowly.