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Senate Finance Committee Passes Health Care Reform

us_capitolThe APA Practice Organization released a formal Information Alert just minutes ago to its members. This latest announcement details that the senate finance committee passed healthcare reform legislation. Only briefly mentioned was that a republican “crossed the isle” to sign on to the reform bill. No matter your opinion on the current debates over healthcare reform, this bill appears to benefit psychologists with continued increased funds. Check the end of this review to read the original APA Information Alert.

Here is the APA Practice Organization Information Alert in full:

Date: October 13, 2009

To: SPTA and Division Federal Advocacy Coordinators, APAGS Coordinators

From: Marilyn Richmond, J.D., Assistant Executive Director for Government Relations, American Psychological Association Practice Organization

Cc: Katherine Nordal, Ph.D., Executive Director for Professional Practice, SPTA Executive Directors, SPTA Directors of Professional Affairs, CAPP

Re: Senate Finance Committee Passes Health Care Reform

After months of consideration, the Senate Finance Committee has passed comprehensive health care reform legislation on a bipartisan vote of 14-9, including all Democrats and Senator Olympia Snowe (R-ME). I am pleased to report that the final version of the America’s Healthy Future Act includes psychology’s top Medicare priority – a two-year extension of the 5% psychotherapy payment restoration. This important victory follows action in the House earlier this summer, where the three committees of jurisdiction passed bills that also included the provision. The Finance bill also would avert the impending 21% cut to provider reimbursements, replace it with a half-percent increase in 2010, and include psychologists in integrated care models in Medicare and Medicaid to promote a team-based approach to health care.

The Senate leadership has already begun the process of merging the Finance Committee measure with the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee bill. Our government relations team will remain vigilant and keep you updated as the process moves forward.

Thanks for your hard work over many months that led to the restoration making it into the committee-passed measures in both houses of Congress!

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