Please indicate whether you support or oppose the following initiatives.
___ ___ Expansion of the Mental Health Parity Act of 1996 by prohibiting differential day and visit limits and out-of-pocket expenses while covering more individuals and health plans.
___ ___ Strengthening federal rules for hospitals and non-hospital mental health facilities to protect patients from inappropriate non-emergency use of seclusion and restraint. Rules should limit seclusion and restraint authorization to physicians or licensed mental health professionals, require frequent monitoring of patient vital signs, and require public reporting of deaths resulting from use of restraint or seclusion.
___ ___ Legislation that would help prevent parents from having to give up custody of their child in order to access mental health care through the creation of a new Medicaid option to allow families to buy into Medicaid and by creating incentives for more states to apply for home- and community-based waivers for children with mental disorders
___ ___ Managed care reform legislation that includes a fair internal and external appeals process, appropriate access to specialists, out-of-formulary pharmacy access, and legal accountability in the event of physical or mental injury.
___ ___ Amending Medicare to cover existing mental health services at parity, establish national standards for partial hospitalization services and provide new benefits of prescription drugs, case management, PACT (program for assertive community treatment), and psychiatric rehabilitation.
___ ___ Amending Medicaid to encourage states to cover the full array of effective services detailed in the Surgeon Generalís report, particularly PACT (program for assertive community treatment), targeted case management and psychiatric rehabilitation.
___ ___ Encouraging greater accountability in state public mental health systems by requiring an unduplicated count of those in the system and the development of systems to report on services received, delays in access to services, lengths of time services are furnished and costs of care.
___ ___ Promotion of independence through the expansion of federal support for rental vouchers, group homes and other housing for people with mental illness and the expansion of various housing options for individuals who are homeless and have a mental illness.
___ ___ Expansion of vocational rehabilitation to improve services to individuals with severe mental illnesses and creation of a new program under the Rehabilitation Act to fund psychiatric rehabilitation, supported employment and other services to individuals with severe mental illnesses.
___ ___ Amendments to SSI and SSDI disability programs to encourage more adults with severe mental illnesses to join the work force and ensure that consumers do not have to choose between health coverage and a job, gradually reducing SSDI benefits, as occurs with SSI, for those entering the workforce.
___ ___ Maintaining the current requirement, carefully crafted in a bipartisan compromise on the 1997 IDEA reauthorization, that schools investigate whether the actionís of a child with a disability that result in expulsion for bringing a firearm to school are a manifestation of the disability and that schools provide a free and appropriate public education during a period of expulsion.
___ ___ Increased funding for the Safe Schools/Healthy Students Program to help address the problem of school violence.
___ ___ Federal appropriations for programs to divert individuals with mental illnesses from jail and to create community mental health services to facilitate the community reintegration of people with mental illnesses who are released from jail or prison.
___ ___ Juvenile justice legislation that includes provisions to meet the needs of youth with mental illnesses while omitting language that harms children with mental disorders and intrudes on the flexibility of the courts.
___ ___ Removal of administrative barriers to statesí blending of funds from the mental health and substance abuse block grants, to better integrate treatment programs for people with co-occurring mental and addictive disorders.
___ ___ Implementation of federal rules on medical record privacy, permitting states to enact laws to strengthen them.
___ ___ Continuing substantial increases in federal funding of biomedical research and for the National Institute of Mental Health to ensure that there are adequate resources for promising biomedical research into mental illnesses and genetics and that completes the bipartisan goal of doubling the NIH budget within 5 years.
___ ___ Targeting research at the NIMH at all levels on serious mental illnesses to at least 85% of the total budget, accurately reflecting the ongoing burden of these diseases, and link all levels of research so that advances rapidly translate into better treatment and services for individuals with these illnesses.
___ ___ Development and funding for IRB (Institutional Review Board) training programs for consumers and families that adequately prepare for evaluation of research protocols, and enhanced scrutiny and protections for individuals with severe mental illnesses who serve as human subjects in research
___ ___ Increased funding for research specifically targeting children with severe mental illnesses to address the lack of definitive research and the growing prevalence of disabling severe mental illnesses in children.
___ ___ Increase the availability and rights of individuals with severe mental illness to receive treatment with all effective and medically appropriate new generation medications and remove "fail-first" policies that require trials of older, less expensive medications before prescribing newer medications.
___ ___ Increase in research funding for veterans with severe mental illnesses, specifically funding an increase in the proportion of the V A research budget that supports mental illness research, that reflects the proportion of the V A patient census (26%) of vets with mental illness, and full funding of VHAís Mental Illness Research Education and Clinical Centers.
Office Sought: _________________________________________________________________
Please fax a copy of this completed questionnaire back to (fill in your information) or mail it to: (fill in your information).
After it has been returned, please be sure to forward the questionnaire to Chris Marshall at the NAMI Office, fax 703-524-9094, or mail:
2107 Wilson Blvd., Suite 300
Arlington, VA 22201-3042
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