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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-
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Public Policy Update

February 11, 2015
Chris Bouneff, Executive Director

Greetings, NAMI Oregon public policy followers -

With the legislative session in full swing, we wanted to update you on the key issues we are pursuing.

Housing fund: Independent and treatment housing for individuals living with mental illness is in short supply. In keeping with our priorities this legislative session, we are pleased to be moving forward with our housing bill, House Bill 2825, which will have a hearing in the House Health Care Committee on Friday, Feb. 20. This bill formalizes NAMI Oregon's housing development incentive fund and allows for its expansion into more Oregon communities. For more details about the bill, click here.

Please contact members of the House Health Care committee and your own legislators and urge them to support HB 2825. To look up your legislators and their contact information, click here.

Access to medications: We oppose House Bill 2421, which eliminates Oregon's current patient protections and hands control of mental health medications to the state's 16 different Coordinated Care Organizations, which will be free to adopt any access restrictions they wish. Every time providers prescribe a medication or patients fill or refill a prescription, they will have to ask: Is it on the approved medication list? NAMI opposes HB 2421 because it eliminates Oregon's long-standing patient protections for individuals living with mental illness. Click here for more information.

Continued Investments in Oregon's Community Mental Health System:

NAMI Oregon supports the Governor's Recommended Budget's investments in community mental health and welcomes investments above and beyond the governor's budget.

Continuing to invest in our community mental health system is essential if outcome-based health care reform is to succeed in Oregon - and necessary if the state of Oregon is to comply with its agreement with the U.S. Department of Justice that calls for Oregon to improve its mental health care system in compliance with the Americans With Disabilities Act. For more information about the state budget and community mental health funding, click here.

We will continue to update membership as the session continues. We encourage you to sign up for our policy alerts if you aren't currently receiving them.

 

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)

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