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U.S. House Approves Two Herrera Beutler Bills Aimed at Expanding Treatments for Mental Health and Substance Use Issues
Mainstreaming Addiction Treatment Act and Collaborate in an Orderly and Cohesive Manner Act included in larger mental health and addiction-related legislative package approved by U.S. House
Washington, June 23, 2022
Tags: Health Care
The U.S. House last night approved two pieces of legislation championed by Congresswoman Jaime Herrera Beutler (WA-03) to help extend life-saving addiction treatment and mental health resources for residents in Southwest Washington and across the country. The Mainstreaming Addiction Treatment (MAT) Act and Collaborate in an Orderly and Cohesive Manner (COCM) Act were rolled into a larger mental health and addiction-related legislative package approved by the U.S. House.
“Mental health and substance use issues continue to profoundly impact communities in Southwest Washington and across our nation,” Herrera Beutler said. “As a co-chair of the Bipartisan Addiction and Mental Health Task Force, I’m continuing to press for commonsense solutions that address these issues, and I’m pleased the House took action and advanced these bipartisan bills to extend life-saving treatment for folks who may be struggling with addiction or mental health issues.”
Mainstreaming Addiction Treatment (MAT) Act:
This legislation would eliminate a bureaucratic requirement – known as the “x-waiver” – that currently limits millions of health care professionals from prescribing a safe and proven treatment, Buprenorphine, to treat patients with opioid addiction.
Background: A National Institutes of Health study showed France's opioid overdose deaths declined by nearly 80 percent over a four-year period after France took similar measures to make buprenorphine prescriptions possible without a waiver.
According to the Department of Health and Human Services, over 40% of counties in the U.S. do not have a physician who is licensed to prescribe this life-saving treatment option.
Collaborate in an Orderly and Cohesive Manner (COCM) Act:
This legislation invests in the Collaborative Care Model, a specific care delivery model that integrates behavioral health care and physical health care together for the treatment of mental health conditions that require regular follow-up, like depression, anxiety, and substance abuse within the primary care setting. The Collaborative Care Model has been studied in more than 90 published trials, showing in many different settings and circumstances that the model improves patient outcomes, lowers total costs of care, and delivers better care at scale.
Specifically, the COCM Act would do the following: