This week, the U.S. House passed Noem-sponsored provisions to increase understanding of mental health resources for seniors. Noem’s bipartisan legislation would initiate two studies regarding Medicare recipients’ access to mental health professionals.

“Millions of Medicare recipients lack adequate access to mental health services, which are critical for aging Americans,” said Noem. “I’m hopeful that by taking a data-driven approach, we can quickly and accurately target resources in a way that does the most good with the fewest amount of taxpayer dollars.”  

If enacted, this legislation, passed as part of a larger package, will direct the Center for Medicaid and Medicare Innovation (CMMI) to explore the use of a 24/7 telephone help line staffed by medical professionals including clinical psychologists, a tool that will reduce the amount of costly and unnecessary mental health-related hospital visits. Furthermore, the bill requires mental and behavioral health research from the Government Accountability Office (GAO) to better understand Medicare beneficiaries’ access to clinical psychologists under current policy and identify areas where improvements can be made.

Do you want to sign up for my E-Newsletter?