Drug & Alcohol

The Department of Human Services (DHS) has announced that they are extending the request for application deadline to Thursday, March 3, 2016, at 5:00 pm. Late last week, a glitch in the Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinics (CCBHC) application was discovered. The Department of Human Services (DHS) fixed the issues and application information can now be entered in the correct fields. Due to this potentially causing a delay in completion of the application, DHS is extending the deadline. The application is available here.

Additional changes include that the required letters of support from the County Mental Health/Intellectual Disability Programs, and Single County Authorities, should be submitted directly to the CCBHC resource account. They should not be sent to the agency submitting the application.

DHS also invites you to attend the second CCBHC Steering Committee meeting. This meeting is taking place on Monday, February 29, 2016, 9:00 am – 12:30 pm at the Child Welfare Resource Center (403 East Winding Hill Road, Mechanicsburg). The first portion of the meeting will be devoted to providing an update and the remainder of the time will focus on the following CCBHC workgroups: Stakeholder Engagement, Data Collection and Reporting, Prospective Payment System, and CCBHC Certification.

RCPA business member and cost reporting expert Paul Stanalonis of Stanalonis and Associates, LLC, presented a cost reporting webinar for RCPA members interested in becoming a Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinic (CCBHC). Mr. Stanalonis has a long history of working within the industry on cost reporting, most recently with the Office of Developmental Programs (ODP), submitting more than 150 residential and transportation cost reports.

The Department of Human Services (DHS) was recently awarded a planning grant that will assist in the creation of Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinics (CCBHC). The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) grant will allow DHS to determine how CCBHCs fit into system redesign efforts, and support efforts to improve the behavioral health of Pennsylvanians by providing community-based mental health and substance use disorder treatment.

CCBHCs will serve adults with serious mental illnesses, children with severe emotional disturbances, and individuals with substance use disorders. The clinics will provide intensive, person-centered, multidisciplinary, evidence-based screen, assessment, diagnostics, treatment, prevention, and wellness services.

DHS invites you to attend one of the four regional CCBHC communication forums. This will be an open forum to gain input from our stakeholders and provide an opportunity to voice questions, comments, and concerns regarding the CCBHC process.

Friday, February 12, 2016
1:00–4:00 pm
OMHSAS Field Office, 100 Lackawanna Avenue, Scranton, PA 

Tuesday, February 16, 2016
1:00–4:00 pm
County Commissioners Association of PA (CCAP), 2789 Old Post Road, Harrisburg, PA 

Wednesday, February 24, 2016
1:00–4:00 pm
Norristown State Hospital, Building 33, 1001 Sterigere Street, Norristown, PA 

Friday, February 26, 2016
9:00 am–12:00 pm
Butler County Staff Development Center, 227 West Cunningham Street, Butler, PA

If you have not already done so, please email your RSVP with the following information: name, agency (if applicable), email address, and which forum you plan on attending.

RCPA has been advocating for years for significant changes to the Mental Health Outpatient regulations to help to protect and strengthen mental health outpatient services in Pennsylvania. In 2010, RCPA developed a position paper outlining the major problems in this area. In response to this crisis, the Office of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services (OMHSAS) developed a task force to work on regulation changes. The task force was a broad range of stakeholders which included consumers, counties, providers, and behavioral health managed care organizations. The task force worked for several years to develop a new set of regulations intended to protect and strengthen mental health outpatient services. The job of the task force was complete in 2014 and OMHSAS submitted the revised regulations to internal sources for approval. From beginning to now, it has been six years since we requested help. OMHSAS responded with strong support but the regulations have been held up in various areas of the department and the administration.

We received the following email today from Jean Rush, who has been the lead at OMHSAS since the beginning of the project:

“I wanted to share the current status of the OP regulation package since we drafted the revisions. With the expansion of Medicaid, the department has made changes to our State Plan Amendments for compliance with ACA which have been approved by CMS. This will require some minimal changes to the OP regulation package which were not an issue during our work.

OMHSAS will be making the minimal changes to the regulation package in conjunction with the Office of Medical Assistance Programs (OMAP) as the Medicaid Authority for the Commonwealth, as well as our Office of Legal Counsel.

The changes will not impact your recommendations but are necessary for compliance and the ability to complete the IRRC review. We will share the changes with you via email and if there are any areas where input is needed, I will be contacting you to schedule a call to discuss.

We appreciate all of the time and dedication to this project and will continue to work on making the changes to move this regulation package to completion. It is still a priority for the department.”

RCPA is hopeful that a resolution is forthcoming and will keep you all posted.

This training session is designed to educate new providers wishing to enroll, and existing enrolled providers wishing to revalidate, in the PA Medical Assistance program on the electronic provider application system. The electronic provider enrollment user interface will allow providers to complete their PA Medical Assistance enrollment application online, effective January 29, 2016.

Please join any of the following sessions:

  • Monday, January 25 – 9:00 to 11:00 am
  • Monday, January 25 – 1:00 to 3:00 pm
  • Tuesday, January 26 – 9:00 to 11:00 am
  • Tuesday, January 26 – 1:00 to 3:00 pm
  • Wednesday, January 27 – 9:00 to 11:00 am
  • Wednesday, January 27 – 1:00 to 3:00 pm

Providers can register here. DHS encourages providers who need to revalidate by March 24, 2016, to submit revalidation applications as soon as possible. Please do not wait for the electronic provider enrollment application to submit your revalidation application.

Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinics (CCBHCs) are changing the very business of health care. Established by the Excellence in Mental Health Act, CCBHCs are designed to provide a comprehensive range of mental health and substance use disorder services, particularly to vulnerable individuals with the most complex needs. New federal standards for CCBHCs will take effect in 2017 in eight states, ultimately selected to participate in a two-year demonstration.

Time is running out; the deadline for revalidating is Thursday, March 24, 2016. Numerous RCPA members have already gone through this process, but it appears that large numbers of providers have not yet done so. A special provider revalidation webinar will be held by RCPA on Wednesday, January 6 at 10:00 am. Jamie Buchenauer, from the Department of Human Services, will be presenting the webcast.