One More Delay For Mental Health Providers In Medicaid Payment Reform

New Jersey will offer a steady level of state Medicaid financial support for supportive housing community-founded services over the upcoming year. This is a move that postpones the execution of a payment reform procedure that advocates have alerted will lower treatment options for vulnerable residents that are mentally ill.

The SDH (State Department of Health) last week confirmed that it will hold-up the modifications. The changes indicate that the state will carry on paying around 40 suppliers for these services on a yearly contract basis by the end of June 2019. Initially, it had intended to move to a fee-for-service repayment system, in which every treatment is paid separately, beginning this July. Suppliers have criticized these projected modifications, which they claimed will push them to work at a cut or deficit programs.

“It is absolutely good news,” claimed CEO and president of the (NJAMHAA) New Jersey Association of Mental Health and Addiction Agencies, Debra Wentz, to the media in an interview. This organization represents many of these suppliers and has raised questions related to the fee-for-service changeover in past years.

The state’s move only associates to accommodating housing services reimbursed via Medicaid. It also includes dozens of additional behavioral health services, comprising psychiatric visits, counseling, and different kinds of substance-abuse care. They have already been moved to the fee-for-service repayment system over the last year. Agencies that cater to developmentally disabled people are also undergoing this change, which most states concluded years back.

But mental health suppliers alerted that supportive-housing services (that are developed to cover things such as travel time and nonclinical care) are specifically hard to bill below the fresh model.

Previously last week the state also declared that it will apply a separate oversight system to monitor features of this fee-for-service transition; a monitor that had been unsuccessful to materialize below the earlier management.

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