NAMI Oregon Oregon
 
  Welcome
  Annual Conference
  Education
  Upcoming Trainings
  Advocacy
  Membership
  Affiliates
  NAMI Northwest Walk
  Latest Research from NIMH
  Newsroom
  Support


from NAMI.org
Suicide Prevention: Can We Talk? Suicide is one of the most difficult subjects to talk about. But a new study shows that educating the group at risk can produce significant results.
OK2Talk: You Really Can Get Through It
Book Review: A Mothers Climb Out of Darkness
YANA: Keep Fighting
-more at NAMI.org-
stars graphic

 

 | Print this page | 
Public Policy Update

February 27, 2015
Chris Bouneff, Executive Director

Good afternoon to followers of NAMI Oregon's Public Policy efforts:

The first weeks of the 2015 Legislature have finally slowed down enough that I have some uninterrupted time to provide an update. The goal is to provide short updates moving forward nearly every Friday as events warrant.

So far, it's been a busy session, compounded by the drama that surrounded Gov. John Kitzhaber's resignation and the swearing in of Kate Brown as Oregon's new governor. What this change means overall and for mental health funding and policy issues is still unknown. About the only known is that through it all, the Legislature continued its work uninterrupted, much to their credit.

Some highlights from the first four weeks:

  • More than 100 NAMI members attended NAMI Oregon's Mental Health Lobby Day on Feb. 12. Members from all over Oregon came to Salem to meet with their House and Senate members, sharing NAMI's public policy priorities for the 2015 legislative session and their personal stories that highlighted why mental health funding and issues should remain high on lawmakers' agendas.

  • NAMI's top legislative priority, House Bill 2825, had its first public hearing on Feb. 20 before the House Health Care Committee. The bill would formalize what NAMI terms a Housing Development Incentive Fund that would lead to more housing being built across Oregon for individuals living with mental illness.
  • Click here to read the testimony that NAMI Oregon submitted in support of the legislation. Also, you can watch a video replay of the public hearing here: http://youtu.be/0zXY5ATJFr8. We are supporting HB 2825 in partnership with the Oregon Residential Providers Association.

    The bill is next scheduled for a work session on March 4. The committee is expected to vote on the bill and refer it to the Joint Ways and Means Committee, where it will be considered for funding. So far, the legislation is being well-received, and we're hopeful that funding will follow.

  • NAMI members sprung into action to defend access to mental health medications leading up to a public hearing on House Bill 2421 on Feb. 11. The legislation would eliminate Oregon's longstanding patient protections around access to critical mental health medications and permit the state's 16 managed Medicaid insurance companies to implement any restrictions they wish - prior authorizations, generics only, fail first. All the techniques that we know can lead to disastrous results for people who rely on medications as one component of their recovery. A summary of NAMI's position on the legislation can be found here: http://goo.gl/E4OIqu.
  • Those are some highlights. We continue to pour over the hundreds of bills that have been introduced that could touch on mental health and addiction issues. We hope to have our analysis wrapped up sometime next week. At that time, we will have a more concrete list of legislation we're following and whether we plan to support, oppose or remain neutral.

    As always, if you have any questions or comments, please feel free to email me directly.

    Thanks,

    Chris

     

    2014 Public Policy Survey Results

    NAMI member and allies overwhelmingly picked housing as their top priority in our recent public policy priorities survey. Click here to read the results and summary of the survey, which will be discussed at June's public policy meeting.

    NAMI Oregon Releases Health Transformation Guide

    Many Oregonians may still be puzzled by the term "health transformation," but the changes forthcoming in Oregon's Medicaid system could vastly improve health care in our state or just be another shot in the dark that fails to hit its intended target. NAMI Oregon has long advocated for an integrated health care system that focuses on individual and family health. To that end, NAMI Oregon is pleased to issue its "Policy Guide to Health Transformation and Integration in Oregon" that collects all of NAMI's various positions on health care transformation into one document. This will serve as our guiding vision for our advocacy on health care reform.

    Please see previous Public Policy Updates below.

    Previous Public Policy Updates

    Stay involved with us - sign up for our e-news and legislative alerts, and click the links below to view minutes from Public Policy Committee meetings.

    Tell us your story - if you have a personal story that illustrates the need for changes in statewide mental health policy and you would like to become an advocate for policy improvement, complete our Advocate Information Form and return it to us today.

    HIPAA Privacy Rule Clarification

    The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has issued a clarification on when it is appropriate for mental health care providers to share information protected under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) Privacy Rule, especially with family members and loved ones. The HIPAA Privacy Rule allows for health care providers to share information about a patient's care with family members not only when permission has been expressly granted, but also in circumstances when the patient may be unable to grant permission but the provider deems sharing information will be in the patient's best interest. For details, read the HIPPA Privacy Rule guidance.

    Communication Checklists

    Communication between care providers and family members of patients seeking treatment for mental illness improves the quality of care and reduces the risk of suicide for these patients. While confidentiality is a fundamental component of a therapeutic relationship, misunderstandings by clinicians about the limitations created by HIPAA, FERPA, and state laws for preserving confidentiality has caused unnecessary concern regarding disclosure of relevant clinical information. 

    To address this deficit of communication, the Oregon Council on Child and Adolescent Psychiatry published a checklist for mental health providers in 2012.  The authors, Dr. Stewart Newman and Jerry Gabay (NAMI Oregon Board Member), have created a companion checklist to help families seek information from providers. Click here to view both the provider checklist and the family member checklist.


    Related Files

    Public Policy Committee meeting minutes - August 2010 (PDF File)
    Public Policy Committee meeting minutes - September 2010 (PDF File)
    Public Policy Committee meeting minutes - November 2010 (PDF File)
    Public Policy Committee meeting minutes - February 2011 (PDF File)
    Public Policy Committee meeting minutes - March 2011 (PDF File)
    Public Policy Committee meeting minutes - April 2011 (PDF File)
    Public Policy Committee meeting minutes - May 2011 (PDF File)
    Public Policy Committee meeting minutes - October 2011 (PDF File)
    Public Policy Committee meeting minutes - November 2011 (PDF File)
    Public Policy Committee meeting minutes - January 2012 (PDF File)
    Public Policy Committee meeting minutes - February 2012 (PDF File)
    Public Policy Committee meeting minutes - March 2012 (PDF File)
    Public Policy Committee meeting minutes - June 2012 (PDF File)
    Public Policy Committee meeting minutes - August 2012 (PDF File)
    Public Policy Committee meeting minutes - November 2012 (PDF File)
    Public Policy Committee meeting minutes - December 2012 (PDF File)
    Public Policy Committee meeting minutes - January 2013 (PDF File)
    Public Policy Committee meeting minutes - March 2013 (PDF File)
    Public Policy Committee meeting minutes - December 2013 (PDF File)
    Advocate Information Form (Word Document)
    June 2011 Public Policy Update (PDF File)
    July 2011 Public Policy Update (PDF File)
    October 2011 Public Policy Update (PDF File)
    November 2011 Public Policy Update (PDF File)
    December 2011 Public Policy Update (PDF File)
    January 2012 Public Policy Update (PDF File)
    February 2012 Public Policy Update (PDF File)
    March 2012 Public Policy Update (PDF File)
    May 2012 Public Policy Update (PDF File)
    August 2012 Public Policy Update (PDF File)
    October 2012 Public Policy Update (PDF File)
    February 2013 Public Policy Update (PDF File)
    March 2013 Public Policy Update (PDF File)
    April 2013 Public Policy Update (PDF File)
    July 2013 Public Policy Update (PDF File)
    December 2013 Public Policy Update (PDF File)
    January 2014 Public Policy Update (PDF File)
    March 2014 Public Policy Update (PDF File)
    October 2014 Public Policy Update (PDF File)
    January 2015 Public Policy Update (PDF File)
    CCO Basics Fact Sheet (PDF File)
    CCOs By County (PDF File)
    DOJ Civil Agreement (PDF File)
    2013 Legislative Priorities (PDF File)
    Housing Bill Summary (PDF File)
    Budget Fact Sheet (PDF File)
    Medication Access Fact Sheet (PDF File)
    Human Services and Housing Committee list (PDF File)
    2014 Public Policy Survey (PDF File)
    State Budget (PDF File)
    Medical Access House Bill 2421 (PDF File)
    Housing Funding House Bill 2825 (PDF File)
    February 2015 Public Policy Update (PDF File)
    Housing Fund Testimony (PDF File)

     | Print this page |