Tags Posts tagged with "office of mental health and substance abuse services"

office of mental health and substance abuse services

Message from OMHSAS:

Thank you all for your patience as we continue to monitor the growing developments and guidance for COVID-19.  Due to the current recommendations of the PA Department of Health and the Governor’s Office, our trainings for the following dates/locations are cancelled:

  1. March 17 @ Marywood University
  2. April 3 @ Danville State Hospital

We will continue to monitor the developments and will notify everyone in the event of additional cancellations.

To folks currently registered via EventBrite: please do not cancel your registration. Once we have new training dates set, we will email out the updated registration link so you all can get re-registered.

If you have any questions about this training series, you may contact Jill Stemple at jistemple@pa.gov.


The Office of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services (OMHSAS) is sponsoring their second annual “Supporting Transgender Clients” Training Series in partnership with the Gender and Sexuality Development Clinic at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. In-person training dates for Harrisburg, Pittsburgh, and Scranton are now available. Please see the flyers listed below for more details and registration information:

If you have any questions about this training series, please contact Jill Stemple.

Office of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services (OMHSAS) Acting Deputy Secretary Valerie Vicari presented a budget breakdown at the Mental Health Planning Council meeting. While the budget is essentially flat for mental health this year, there is funding to support the Intensive Behavioral Health Services (IBHS) regulatory changes as well as expanding the First Episode Psychosis programs.

There is no funding to support either the restoration of county funding cuts from 2012/13 or funding to support Reach Out PA/Mental Health Matters. As a result, this is essentially flat funding for mental health, at a time when the mental health system is in crisis.

RCPA encourages our members to continue reaching out to your legislators asking for county restoration funding, increases to psychiatric outpatient funding (which include substance abuse services), and for money to make “Reach Out PA” a reality.

For more information contact Jim Sharp or Sarah Eyster.

0 930

The Office of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services (OMHSAS) has released a bulletin today outlining Intensive Behavioral Health Services (IBHS) code clarification, rates, and MA Fee For Service (FFS) rates.

The bulletin outlines the IBHS overview, including the procedure codes for Individual Services, Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) Services, and Group Services. In addition to the rate fee schedule is language on prior authorization for services.

OMHSAS cites the following fiscal impact overview: the fiscal impact estimated for Fiscal Year (FY) 2019–20 is $11.1 million ($5.3 million in State funds). The estimated fiscal impact for FY 2020–21 is $38.5 million ($18.4 million in State funds). The estimated fiscal impact for FY 2021–22 is $45.8 million ($21.9 million in State funds).

RCPA recommends you review the rate schedule in accordance with your service delivery continuum as part of your implementation planning. RCPA will be reviewing the bulletin and working with RCPA members, OMHSAS, and the BH-MCOs on the fiscal and operational implementation of the IBHS regulations.

There will be a public comment period, whereby interested persons are invited to submit written comments regarding the changes to the MA Program Fee Schedule to the Department of Human Services, Office of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services, c/o Deputy Secretary’s Office, Attention: Regulations Coordinator, 11th Floor, Commonwealth Towers, 303 Walnut Street, Harrisburg, PA 17120.

Comments may also be emailed. Comments received will be reviewed and considered for any subsequent revisions to the MA Program Fee Schedule. Please forward comments and feedback to RCPA Children’s Division Director Jim Sharp as part of your OMHSAS response.

The RCPA IBHS work group will have its regularly scheduled meeting this week and report out as per process. Please contact Jim Sharp with any questions or feedback.

Tablet on a desk - Questions and Answers

The Office of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services (OMHSAS) has released an updated version of the Intensive Behavioral Health Services (IBHS) FAQ. Additionally, there will be another FAQ update in early January. Please review the new version as the inquiries include OMHSAS responses on staff training / qualifications, licensing parameters, service delivery, and other key feedback brought forth by stakeholders. The new IBHS FAQ can be found here.

We have been informed that there will be new OMHSAS IBHS bulletins released in December, regarding the prior authorized services in the fee-for-service delivery system and the medical necessity guidelines. All new IBHS information provided will also be reviewed by the RCPA IBHS Work Group.

As the IBHS implementation moves forward, we ask that RCPA Children’s Division Director Jim Sharp be included on questions sent to the IBHS RA account or directly to OMHSAS regional offices. We will continue to maintain our own member inquiry repository. If you have any questions or feedback, please contact Jim Sharp.

The Office of Developmental Programs (ODP) and the Office of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services (OMHSAS) announced the publication of a new issue of Positive Approaches Journal, written by and for professionals who provide supports and services to individuals with mental and behavioral health challenges, intellectual disabilities, autism, and other developmental disabilities. This issue’s theme is “Rights, Risks, and Restrictions.”

“Data Discoveries,” a feature of Positive Approaches, spotlights useful data presented in ways that are interesting and customizable. “Data Discoveries” will feature a word cloud of thoughts and phrases pertinent to the theme of “Rights, Risks, and Restrictions.” In an effort to learn more about your perceptions of how rights, risks, and restrictions are perceived in the community, the editorial board of Positive Approaches asks for your participation in a brief online survey exploring the words or phrases you feel correspond with these concepts, as they relate to work, experiences, and priorities.

The Positive Approaches Journal is published quarterly. For additional information, please submit inquiries/comments via email.

The Office of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services (OMHSAS) is sponsoring our second annual training series, “Supporting Transgender Clients,” in partnership with the Gender and Sexuality Development Clinic at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. Training dates/locations for in-person trainings will be coming soon; once the dates are announced, RCPA will send out an Alert. Dates for the webinar series are available here. Webinar slots are limited; if multiple staff from one location wish to participate, please consider viewing jointly. If you have questions, or would like additional information, please email Jill Stemple or RCPA Children’s Director Jim Sharp.

On Wednesday, November 20, the Office of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services (OMHSAS) conducted its most recent WebEx, outlining several key areas to the Intensive Behavioral Health Services (IBHS) implementation. The materials for the presentation can be found here.

This presentation provided an overview of the following:

  • Written Orders;
  • Assessment;
  • Training Approval Process;
  • Current Department Approved Trainings;
  • Family Outreach;
  • Medical Necessity Guidelines;
  • Licensing;
  • Enrollment/ Billing; and
  • Rates.

This link will direct you to the IBHS Website on the HealthChoices server. At the bottom of the page is the repository of information on these topics as well as the updated FAQ. The RCPA IBHS Work Group will be reconvening in early December to continue to address implementation issues in conjunction with OMHSAS. If you have any questions or feedback, please contact RCPA Children’s Division Director Jim Sharp.

Tablet on a desk - Questions and Answers

As part of the ongoing Intensive Behavioral Health Services (IBHS) Implementation, OMHSAS has released an FAQ guide. This guide represents a composite of inquiries regarding the standards and will be updated as a companion piece to the implementation.

Additionally, the IBHS Region Summits will be wrapping up next week so if you have any additional questions, please email RCPA Children’s Division Director Jim Sharp. Jim will be attending the session on November 14; please forward questions to him so that he may be able to present them. The next OMHSAS IBHS WebEx is scheduled for Wednesday, November 20 from 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm; register here to participate.

The RCPA Children’s IBHS Work Group will reconvene the first week of December to continue its work on standards for our members, and will convey its findings to the Children’s Division via Alerts, Infos, and regularly scheduled divisional meetings.

On October 8, 2019, the Office of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services (OMHSAS) hosted a statewide webinar to discuss Act 147 of 2004, Mental Health Treatment – Consent to Treatment, Release of Medical Records. The recording of the webinar, along with supporting documentation, can be found here. A frequently asked questions document is also being created and will be available upon completion.

Act 147 has elicited many questions and discussions across our mental health and school-based services committees. We recommend you share this information with your program leadership, perhaps as part of training. We will continue to review Act 147 in our work groups and report out on information and activities as warranted.

If you have any questions or feedback, please submit them to this email and copy RCPA Children’s Division Director Jim Sharp on the correspondence.