Authors Posts by Sarah Eyster

Sarah Eyster

Ms. Eyster represents the association at state-level meetings and serves as staff liaison to the Mental Health Committee. She is responsible for member communication of, and the analysis of, Department of Human Services and other key policy decisions.

The Importance of Measurement-Based Care: A Conversation With the Experts at Yale
Virtual Panel on April 14

Greenspace Health has created an educational partnership with the Yale Measurement-Based Care Collaborative (MBCC) to bring together a three-part educational series on Measurement-Based Care.

You are invited to the first virtual panel, The Importance of Measurement-Based Care: A Conversation With the Experts at Yale, coming up on April 14 at 10:00 am PST. Through a talk-show style conversation, the four renowned psychologists who make up the Collaborative will share their unique perspectives on Measurement-Based Care and its value in shaping the future of behavioral health and addictions services.

Visit here for more details and to register.

RCPA and our Delta Center Grant partner, the Pennsylvania Association of Community Health Centers (PACHC), invite people with first-hand experience and advocates using or trying to use telehealth services to share your experiences.

The discussions and subsequent recommendations will guide the PA Delta Center team in its advocacy in developing regulations, bulletins, and practices that ensure equity and access to services for all communities. These forums are to bring advocates and stakeholders to the table to provide life experience and perspectives that can shape policy development. We hope you will join us for one of these events, as your participation will be key to our ongoing work in ensuring a healthy and sustainable telehealth footprint in Pennsylvania.

People who are volunteering to join the forum for free will be paid a stipend of $20/hour for their time or given an equivalent in a gift card.

To register for the first forum on March 16, visit here.

To register for the second forum on March 30, visit here.

If you have any questions, please contact Sarah Eyster of RCPA.

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Message from the Office of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services (OMHSAS) Deputy Kristen Houser:

Providers of IBHS, mobile crisis services, family-based mental health services, and psychiatric rehabilitation services received an attestation form for HCBS Workforce Gap payments on or after January 19, 2022. Following release of the attestation forms, OMHSAS received concerns regarding the anticipated payment amounts and allowable uses of the funds. To address these concerns, OMHSAS committed to reviewing the data used in the methodology to calculate payments and released an FAQ on February 9, 2022.

On the original data run, the absence of available CY 2021 data was of particular concern for providers of IBHS, given that 2020 was a year of transition from BHRS to IBHS. When OMHSAS first pulled data to calculate payments to each of these provider types and locations, CY 2021 data was not available. We have re-run the payment calculations using CY 2021 data. Where CY 2019 data showed a more favorable outcome for a provider, the CY 2019 was used. The CY 2019 data was supplemented with 2021 data for FBMH, Mobile Crisis, and PRS provider locations that were not present in the CY 2019 data and that had more favorable data in CY 2021.

Please note that any previously submitted attestation forms will be considered null and void, and OMHSAS will be sending new forms with the new amounts reflecting the most complete claims data in the next few weeks. We will send notification through our email list when they are sent.

If you have not checked your contact information and both email and physical addresses in PROMISe, please do so immediately to help ensure the quickest method of notification.

If you have questions about provider qualifications or other topics related to these payments, please refer to our FAQs.

Thank you for your patience and understanding. We know these payments for workforce recruitment and retention are critical, and it is important to us that they be as accurate as possible.

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RCPA will be holding its first 988/Crisis Regulation Work Group meeting on Wednesday, March 23, 2022, from 9:30 am–11:00 am. All lifeline call centers are invited to attend. The goal of this group is to discuss the transition to and implementation of 988 and possible challenges. We will also be reviewing and providing input for the pending crisis intervention regulations.

You can register for the meeting here. Please email Sarah Eyster with questions.

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RCPA will begin hosting regular meetings with Pennsylvania Integrated Care and Wellness Centers (ICWC) and Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinics (CCBHC). The first meeting is scheduled to be held on Thursday, March 31, 2022, from 1:30 pm–3:00 pm. This meeting is open to RCPA members and non-members.

The goal of the meetings is to gather together those who are currently acting as an ICWC or CCBHC as well as RCPA members and non-members who are interested in applying for a SAMHSA CCBHC Demonstration grant. The meeting format and frequency will be discussed at the first meeting.

President Biden outlined in his press release before the State of the Union address a federal strategy to address the mental health crisis and expansion of CCBHCs. This meeting is an opportunity to share challenges and successes as ICWCs and CCBHCs.

You can register for the meeting here. Please contact Sarah Eyster with questions.