Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) has introduced S. 3709, the Health IT Extension for Behavioral Health Services Act. This legislation would extend federal incentive payments for the adoption and meaningful use of health IT to previously ineligible behavioral health providers and facilities.
Specifically, S. 3709 adds clinical psychologists, clinical social workers, mental health and substance abuse treatment facilities, and psychiatric hospitals to the list of entities eligible to receive incentive payments.
The bill also makes these entities eligible for assistance from Health IT Regional Extension Centers. The National Council has worked closely with Sen. Whitehouse on the introduction of this bill, which is cosponsored by Senators Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Al Franken (D-MN), Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ), Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), and Debbie Stabenow (D-MI). Click here to contact your Senators and urge them to sign on to S. 3709!
This legislation is a companion bill to HR 5040 in the House. As of today, 69 Representatives have signed on to HR 5040 as cosponsors.