NURS 6050 Week 4 Assignment Legislation Grid and Testimony Advocacy Statement

NURS 6050 Week 4 Assignment Legislation Grid and Testimony Advocacy Statement

Mental health access improvement bill if enacted would cause an amendment of the existing Medicare law as this bill seeks that mental health counselling, marriage and family therapist be covered under Medicare so as to give access to many who never had or can’t afford to pay for the services (“Senate introduces the mental health access Improvement Act of 2021,” 2021). In America there are statistics that shows that about 20 percent of our seniors aged from 55yrs and above are at higher risk for mental health instability hence the purpose of this bill is to give more vulnerable people especially the seniors access to mental health who can’t afford the services (“Medicare mental health access act would remove barriers to care,” 2020).

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Due to the increasing level of stress, financial instability, high level of unemployment just as we have noticed during the time the world has been fighting this pandemic have destabilized a lot of our citizens mentally as the rate of suicide, depression and crime rate has been of the increase lately.

Legislation Comparison Grid Template

Use this document to complete Part 1 of the Module 2 Assessment Legislation Comparison Grid and Testimony/Advocacy Statement

 

Health-related Bill Name The Mental Health Access Improvement Act, 2019
Bill Number (H.R.945/S.286)
Description The Mental health access improvement bill if enacted would cause an amendment of the existing Medicare law as this bill seeks that mental health counselling, marriage and family therapist be covered under Medicare so as to give access to many who never had or can’t afford to pay for the services.
Federal or State? Federal
Legislative Intent The bill will give especially the seniors access to mental health care as they can’t afford it and it will in the long run help reduce the cost of treating mental health if its identified and managed at the early onset of mental health challenges.
Proponents/ Opponents Proponents: American foundation for suicide prevention, National alliance for mental illness

 

 

Opponents: The financial implication, The shortage of mental healthcare professionals (“Top 5 barriers to mental healthcare access,” 2020).

 

 

Target Population Children, adults, all Americans, people who use tobacco
Status of the bill (Is it in hearings or committees? Currently the bill is in the committee

 

General Notes/Comments

 

 

Due to the increasing level of stress, financial instability, high level of unemployment just as we have noticed during the time the world has been fighting this pandemic have destabilized a lot of our citizens mentally as the rate of suicide, depression and crime rate has been of the increase lately.

 

Part 2: Legislation Testimony/Advocacy Statement

My position on this bill is that Medicare should be made to cover the services as proposed in this bill such as increasing access to mental health care and also covering the services of marriage and family therapy. This bill if enacted will help relieve some of the pressures people are going through (Milstead, J. A., & Short, N. M. (2019). Also having a plan that focuses on early identification and treatment of mental illness will help reduce eliminate or reduce the indirect cost of managing them in psychiatric hospitals, prisons and so on.

Addressing Opponents

One of the opponents identified in this bill is the cost implication as most committees will focus on the direct cost and not focus on the indirect cost of not identifying mental illness in the early stages. Another opponent I identified is the shortage of mental health care providers especially in the rural areas. Plans should be made at the same time the bill is enacted to ensure or have plans to increase the number of mental health providers by allowing Nurse Practitioners to practice within their license so as to cover the gap in medical care.

Conclusion

This is a welcome bill that majority of the people will be happy about but unfortunately, I feel the bill is not getting the needed attention it should be getting as it has lingered for some time now because most Politian’s have made everything to be politics as they only push for laws that restrict the basic care coupled with their attitude of downplaying on sensitive cases that will benefit the general public (Taylor et al., 2017). If the services of mental health care is covered by the Medicare, it will help in early identification of mental health problems and save the indirect cost of taking care of them in the prisons and hospitals if not well managed in time.

References

Medicare mental health access act would remove barriers to care. (2020). Mental Health Weekly30(36), 7-8. 

Senate introduces the mental health access Improvement Act of 2021. (2021, March 22). American Counseling Association | A professional home for counselors. 

Top 5 barriers to mental healthcare access. (2020, July 28). Social Solutions. 

Taylor, D., Olshansky, E. F., Woods, N. F., Johnson-Mallard, V., Safriet, B. J., & Hagan, T. (2017). Corrigendum to position statement: Political interference in sexual and reproductive health research and health professional education [Nursing outlook 65/2 (2017) 242–245]. Nursing Outlook65(3), 346-350. 

Milstead, J. A., & Short, N. M. (2019). Health policy and politics: A nurse’s guide (6th ed.). Burlington, MA: Jones & Bartlett Learning.

 

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