On March 18, bipartisan legislation that would include licensed marriage and family therapists (LMFTs), as well as licensed mental health counselors (LMHCs), as Medicare providers was introduced in the U.S. Senate. Please contact your Members of Congress now and ask them to support MFTs as Medicare providers!
This MFTs in Medicare legislation, the Mental Health Access Improvement Act of 2021 (S. 828) was introduced by Senators John Barrasso (R-WY) and Debbie Stabenow (D-MI). This legislation would require Medicare to recognize LMFTs and LMHCs as Medicare-eligible providers of covered behavioral health services to Seniors and other Medicare beneficiaries. This bill is identical to a bill introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives (H.R. 432) in January by Representatives Mike Thompson (D-CA) and John Katko (R-NY).
AAMFT would like to thank Senators Barrasso and Stabenow for their past and current support for this important legislation and their efforts in advocating for MFTs as Medicare providers. Please read their press release on S. 828 for additional information on this legislation and for their powerful words of support for this bill. This legislation is also identical to bills introduced in the House of Representatives (H.R. 945) and the Senate (S. 286) in the last Congress, the 116th Congress (2019-2020).
The initial step in moving this legislation through Congress is encouraging Members of Congress to cosponsor this bill. It is absolutely essential that Members of Congress hear from you, as a constituent, that you support including MFTs as Medicare providers. Having a large number of cosponsors early in this Congress makes it more likely that Congress will consider this legislation. Already, H.R. 432 has 13 cosponsors. Please keep up this positive momentum by encouraging your Congressperson and Senators to support MFTs as Medicare providers by cosponsoring this legislation!
Do you have family, friends or colleagues in other professions who want to support this legislation? AAMFT has created a friends and family grassroots message that they can send to their Member of Congress to advocate for this important information.
Please feel free to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions.
Additional resources on MFTs in Medicare