Kansas Mental
Health Coalition

The Kansas Mental Health Coalition is working to improve mental health in Kansas

The Kansas Mental Health Coalition (KMHC) is a collaborative organization of numerous non-profit organizations, agencies and individuals representing consumers, families, and providers dedicated to improving the lives of Kansans with mental illness.  Read more.

MEMBERSHIP RENEWALS are due now.  Please Click Here to Join or Renew.  Community Mental Health Centers do not need to act, your membership renewal is handled by the Association of Community Mental Health Centers of Kansas.  Thank you for your support!

Bill introduced to repeal law
exempting mental health medications from Medicaid
Prior Authorizations or Preferred Drug Lists


For years, mental health advocates have opposed managed care restrictions that could stand between mental health consumers and their preferred medications.  This year, the state agency that oversees Kancare (Kansas' Medicaid program) is recommending the Kansas Legislature repeal the law that exempts mental health medications from prior authorizations or preferred drug lists.  

A bill was introduced Thursday, Jan. 29th, in the Senate Public Health Committee to repeal the law that exempts mental health medications from prior authorizations or preferred drug lists.  The language is not yet available but should be published soon.

Governor Brownback has made a mental health drug formulary part of his proposed budget.  An article at KHI.org cites state officials estimate the repeal could save the Medicaid program more than $8 million - a surprising assessment since one of the most cited high cost medications will have a generic alternative in the next few months, whether or not the law is repealed. 

Coalition members expressed their concerns about this proposal to Kari Bruffett, KDADS Secretary, at the January KMHC Meeting.  The Secretary indicated an interest in receiving recommendations from Coalition members if an appropriate process can be identified.  At this point, KDADS and KDHE are recommending the statute be repealed, citing the need to have full flexibility to implement prior authorization rules (PAs) and safety edits without any restrictions.  It is unclear if a Preferred Drug List is intended.  The Secretary also expressed an interest in deleting the prohibition for step therapy.  In testimony to the Legislature, Secretary Mosier, KDHE, has indicated that they were not planning to change medications for individuals with chronic and persistent mental illness who are already on a successful medication plan.  The rules for this exception would need to be developed.  READ THE KHI ARTICLE.

State Opens Comment Period for Proposed Changes to SED Waiver, Autism Waiver and TA Waiver (HCBS Waivers)

The Kansas Department on Aging and Disability Services has announced proposed changes to three HCBS waiver programs and has opened a public comment period from 1/26/15 through 2/25/15. The final proposal is summarized in the linked document: HCBS Transition Plan and Proposed HCBS Program Changes and Request for Public Comments. 

The final summary of the proposed changes in the HCBS renewals effects the following programs:   Autism   Technology Assisted (TA)  Severe Emotional Disturbance (SED).

Public comment opportunities include meetings February 4th and 5th from 10-12 and 2-4 in Wichita and Topeka, teleconferencing, email, mail, and fax.  See the document above.

SED Waiver changes includes: parents signature indicates their preferences were reflected in the Plan of Care, adding consumer's preferred outcomes to the Plan of Care, identifying less intrusive methods that were tried but not successful, adding a provision that - if there is a waiting list - eligible military families may bypass the waiting list, and significant added layers to the SED eligibility process. 

The current process is that the Community Mental Health Center (CMHC) completes the functional assessment and determines if a consumer is clinically eligible for the SED waiver. In the proposed process the CMHC will complete the functional assessment and send the information to KDADS for the clinical determination. Once a consumer is found to be clinically eligible for the waiver the Department of Children and Family will assess if that consumer if financially eligible to be on the waiver. Once a consumer is found to be both clinically and financially eligible for the waiver the CMHC will develop the Plan of Care and submit it to the Managed Care Organization (MCO) for review and approval. After the Plan of Care is approved by the MCO the CMHC will provide the waiver services to the consumer.


Upcoming events

JOIN THE GRASSROOTS ADVOCACY NETWORK: KANSAS VOICES FOR MENTAL HEALTH
Join other Kansans who are dedicated to educating others about Kansas mental health issues.   Kansas needs you!  Our advocates were recognized at the 2014 Mental Health Advocacy Day events March 13 in Topeka.  

CONSIDER JOINING US

Membership in the Kansas Mental Health Coalition is open to anyone who is interested in collaborating with others toward our common goals.

Please check out our membership information and select a member category to join.  Fill out the information sheet and send dues to Kansas Mental Health Coalition, P.O. Box 4744, Topeka, KS  66604.

 

Over 400 attend 2014 Mental Health Advocacy Day

More than 400 fellow consumers, family members, providers and advocates traveled to Topeka to learn about current mental health policy and budget issues and to educate our Kansas Legislators!  
 

(c) Kansas Mental Health Coalition, P.O. Box 4103, Topeka, KS  66604-0103         785-969-1617

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