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Children’s Partial Hospital Draft Bulletins Released
March 28, 2006

The Office of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services (OMHSAS) has released a draft regulation interpretation bulletin providing for better integration of education services with school-day partial hospital programs. This draft bulletin seeks to encourage education and treatment integration and coordination. The draft also explicitly allows local education agencies to become licensed providers of partial hospital services for school age children and would require new programs to be based within school facilities.

The Department of Public Welfare and the Department of Education have also released a joint draft bulletin and basic education circular that is intended to clarify the respective roles of public schools and partial hospital programs serving school age children.
This draft bulletin calls for:

  • The school district of residence to take programmatic and fiscal responsibility for students in partial hospital,
  • Children to receive five or five and one-half hours of instruction per day,
  • Schools and partial hospital programs to integrate education and treatment services, and
  • Limits on long-term homebound instruction.

The draft bulletin also outlines school and partial hospital requirements for collaborative letters of agreement between schools and partial hospitals, and referral, evaluation, an interagency team meeting process, and discharge planning.

Comments on these bulletins may be emailed to OMHSAS at ra-phpcomments@state.pa.us.

For additional information or questions, contact Connell O'Brien.

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