June 2022 Update from BHAM

Woop woop! You guys … we did it! We made it to June. This means we are supposed to be enjoying all the May flowers that the April showers brought in, right? Well according to the downpour happening right outside my window, it would appear that April is playing an encore with some more showers. But on the upside, the light show of wildflowers happening all around western Montana truly is fantastic.

We hope that June finds you all doing well and looking forward to some fun summer plans around our state. And while we’re at it, we’d like to extend a HUGE congrats to any high school graduates reading this, or the extended families of the grads. The end of high school and the beginning of summer are times that are filled with hope and excitement.

And now onto the news …..

Provider Trainings for providers seeking PA/CSRs:

There will be a series of trainings for those providers seeking PA/CSRs for various services in order to help with the enrollment and use of the Qualitrac system. Individuals who will be seeking these approvals should attend the appropriate trainings. More information can be found on this PDF. (Click the highlighted text or the graphic below to access the full document).

DPHHS hires new Medicaid director:

“Mike Randol took over on May 31, 2022 as head of Montana’s Medicaid program, which serves 280,000 people who live in low-income households or have disabilities in a state of 1.1 million people.”

Read the full article published by Kaiser Health News (KHN) by clicking the link here.

Mike Randol (photo: KELSEY KREMER / The Des Moines Register)

Certified Community Behavioral Health Centers (CCBHCs)

Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinics as facilities specifically designed to provide a community with an all-inclusive range of substance use and mental health disorder services, especially for individuals who have the most complex need

Through a generous grant provided by the Murdock Charitable Trust, the Behavioral Health Alliance of Montana has taken the lead on vetting the CCBHC model with providers and state stakeholders. 

The National Council on Mental Wellbeing have led two different groups through policy discussions about the model so that both providers and state stakeholders can ask questions and fully understand the impact CCBHCs would have on the behavioral health system in Montana if DPHHS chose to request permission from Centers for Medicare/Medicaid to bring the model to Montana.

Advocacy Suggestions: 

You can learn more about the CCBHC model here: https://www.thenationalcouncil.org/program/ccbhc-success-center/ccbhc-overview/

Provider Rate Study:

The rate study was requested by DPHHS and funded by the 2021 Legislature. DPHHS hired Guidehouse to run the study as they had extensive experience with Medicaid studies in other states. This study will only look at Medicaid services, so Therapeutic Group Homes, but not shelter care, and this phase will only study mental health, substance use disorder, disability services, and senior and long-term care as they were viewed as the rates most requiring an increase. 

The final results from the Guidehouse study will be given to DPHHS in late summer. 

DPHHS will then make suggestions for rate changes for programs to both the governor’s budget and the Children’s and Families Health and Human Services (CFHSS) Interim Committee probably in August or September 2022. 

Advocacy Suggestions: 

  • Advocate to your representatives and senators across the state for putting the DPHHS recommended rate increases into the governor’s budget. 
  • Advocate for both Republican and Democratic Representatives and Senators to support the rate increases as this was a legislatively funded study proposed by DPHHS under the Republican administration. 

Please reach out to me if there is anything you need. When we work together, we can solve all the problems out there!

Stay safe. Stay healthy.

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