“I have heard from many older Americans struggling with mental health challenges because they do not have access to adequate mental health care,” said Senator Hassan.
The bipartisan Mental Health Access Improvement Act lifts restrictions on certain mental health professionals that bar them from billing Medicare. This will increase access to existing mental health professionals and allow them to treat America’s seniors.
Hassan is working across the aisle to strengthen mental health supports. President Joe Biden recently signed into law a bipartisan bill cosponsored by Senator Hassan to authorize the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to create a pilot program on dog training therapy and provide service dogs to veterans with mental health challenges. Senator Hassan also recently introduced a bipartisan bill to improve maternal mental health outcomes for pregnant and postpartum patients, including working to address postpartum depression and anxiety, and maternal suicide – which is a leading cause of maternal mortality and morbidity in the United States. Senators Hassan and Ernst are also working together to combat veterans suicide, and introduced a bipartisan bill to direct the Department of Veterans Affairs to designate one week per year as “Buddy Check Week” to organize outreach events and educate veterans on how to conduct peer wellness check.
By providing these mental ealth professionals the opportunity to participate in the Medicare program, this bill expands the number of mental health providers available to our nation’s seniors.
“The isolation and loss caused by the COVID-19 pandemic has only exacerbated this issue. This bipartisan bill is an example of how we can work together to address the real needs of our constituents, and I urge my colleagues to pass this important bill,” she said.