AAMFT shared recent announcements regarding the June 30th Congressional hearing by the Energy and Commerce subcommittee. In the hearing, the MFTs in Medicare bill, H.R. 945 was discussed along with 20 other mental health bills. Our bill was mentioned in a positive light during the hearing. It was our hope that this would lead the committee to move forward in trying to present the bill to the House and pass the bill through Congress.
The committee announced they would be holding a markup of a selection of the bills discussed during the June 30th hearing and on other topics the committee oversees during a meeting held on July 15th. A markup is the process by which congressional committees and subcommittees debate, amend, and rewrite proposed legislation before presenting to the full House. 30 bills on various topics were discussed during the markup. Four of the bills from the June 30th hearing were selected for the markup, of which H.R. 945 was not selected.
However, the subcommittee has insinuated that there is a chance for additional bills to be presented at markups that would occur in the upcoming months. This means that MFTs still have a chance to advocate for the progression of H.R. 945. We will continue to advocate for the MFTs in Medicare bill, as well as continuing to reach out to membership as we work together to try and get into the next markup. While MFTs cannot yet bill Medicare for reimbursement, efforts to be able to do so continue.
Participation from MFTs is incredibly important during this time. While we continue to advocate for the MFTs in Medicare bill, the most effective voices will always be that of the professionals who live across the country. The voice that Congress cares most to hear from is that of the constituent from their own state. If you have not already done so, please contact your Members of Congress and urge them to support the MFTs in Medicare legislation.
AAMFT continues to hold the inclusion of MFTs as Medicare providers as the top federal advocacy priority. In addition to your grassroots advocacy to Congress in support of the MFTs in Medicare legislation, we need your help in one other effort: sustaining AAMFT’s Practice Protection Fund. The AAMFT Practice Protection Fund is used to help pay for items related to advancing pro-MFT policies at the state and federal level and protecting the profession from serious threats.
Due to funding from the PPF, AAMFT has been able to bring members to Washington in order to advocate for MFTs in Medicare legislation with Congress. In order to continue these visits and other pro-MFT advocacy activities, we need to have the funds to continue doing so. Please help advocate for MFTs by donating to the Practice Protection Fund today. Thank you to the Family TEAM for all your advocacy efforts, and for your continued support of the MFTs in Medicare bill.