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Latest News Around the Web

Some Members Of Congress And Some States Trying To Increase Medicaid Reimbursements For Behavioral Health And Substance Abuse Treatment

Modern Healthcare (5/31, Dickson, Subscription Publication) reports some members of Congress and some states are trying to “end some limits on Medicaid reimbursements for behavioral health and substance abuse treatment in the face of the nationwide opioid addiction crisis.” The article points out that a bipartisan group of Senators introduced a bill in May that would ease restrictions on such reimbursements, and some states have also been authorized by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services “to lift these restrictions for their Medicaid programs.”

Related Links:

— “Feds, states seek to end Medicaid’s limits on substance abuse care,”Virgil Dickson, Modern Healthcare, May 31, 2017.

Suicide-Related Hospitalizations Of Young People Increasing, Study Suggests

The Cincinnati (OH) Enquirer (5/30, Korte) reports a study on suicide-related hospitalizations of teenagers and children found the number of patients between the ages of five and 17 admitted “for such thoughts or actions more than doubled from 2008 to 2015.” In arriving at the study’s findings, researchers examined “data from 32 hospitals contained in the Pediatric Health Information System.” The findings were presented recently at the Pediatric Academic Societies Meeting.

Related Links:

— “Youth suicide rates are rising. School and the Internet may be to blame.,”Lara Korte, , , May 30, 2017.

Suicide Risk Markedly Elevated After Psychiatric Hospital Discharge, Review Suggests

HealthDay (5/31, Preidt) reports a new systematic review and meta-analysis “confirms that psychiatric patients are at high risk for suicide immediately after being discharged from a mental health care facility, and that risk can remain high for years,” researchers found after examining “data from 100 studies conducted over more than 50 years” involving some “18,000 suicides involving patients discharged from psychiatric facilities.” The findings were published online May 31 in JAMA Psychiatry.

According to MedPage Today (5/31, Bachert), the author of “an accompanying editorial…wrote that the findings confirmed that suicide risk is markedly elevated after psychiatric hospital discharge, ‘despite advances in mental health treatments.’”

Related Links:

— “Suicide Risk Is High for Psychiatric Patients Long After Discharge From Care,” Robert Preidt, HealthDay, May 31, 2017.

Depression In Many Children May Start As Early As Age 11, Data Indicate

The Washington Post (5/31, Cha) reports that “depression in many children appears to start as early as age 11,” research indicated. What’s more, “by the time they hit age 17, the analysis found, 13.6 percent of boys and a staggering 36.1 percent of girls have been or are depressed,” investigators found after examining “data compiled from in-person interviews with more than 100,000 children who participated in the National Survey of Drug Use and Health from 2009 to 2014.” The findings were published online May 30 in Translational Psychiatry.

Related Links:

— “ More than a third of teenage girls experience depression, new study says,”Ariana Eunjung Cha, The Washington Post, May 31, 2017.

APA Renews Call For Bipartisan Solution To Healthcare Reform

Healio (5/25) reports the American Psychiatric Association has “renewed its call for a bipartisan solution to health care” in light of the “recently released Congressional Budget Office estimates regarding the American Health Care Act [AHCA],” particularly since “the CBO score confirmed” APA’s “concerns that the AHCA will negatively affect individuals with mental health and substance use disorders.” Outgoing APA President Maria A. Oquendo, MD, PhD, said in a press release, “We are deeply troubled that 23 million Americans could lose access to health care.” Dr. Oquendo added, “Taking away their coverage is unconscionable.” APA CEO and Medical Director Saul Levin, MD, MPA, said, “We stand ready to work with both parties to ensure adequate health care for all Americans.”

Psychiatric News (5/25) reports that “an estimated 1.3 million Americans with serious mental illness and 2.8 million Americans with substance use disorders gained coverage for the first time under the expansion of Medicaid in the” Affordable Care Act. In a press release, the APA wrote, “As the Senate debates reforms to the health system, services for people with mental health and substance use disorders – and their families – must be maintained.” For that reason, “the APA urges the Senate to reject the American Health Care Act in favor of bipartisan legislation.”

Related Links:

— “APA renews call for bipartisan health care reform, Healio, May 25, 2017.

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