On September 10, 2020, the House Energy & Commerce Committee held a full committee markup of 38 different bills, including the Mental Health Access Improvement Act (H.R. 945). The bills considered today included many health-related bills intended to expand access to mental health services, combat the opioid epidemic, reauthorize key public health programs and improve Medicare enrollment.
H.R. 945 was labeled as “premature” by House Energy and Commerce Health Subcommittee Ranking Member Michael Burgess (R-TX). However, Subcommittee Chairperson Anna Eshoo (D-CA) voiced her support and labeled the bill a “priority”. She stated, “It is imperative that we expand the pool of qualified mental health professionals who are eligible to treat Medicare beneficiaries.”
H.R. 945 was voted favorably out of committee. The Energy and Commerce Chairman Frank Pallone, Jr. (D-NJ) stated his intent is to have all bills that were voted out of committee voted on by the full House of Representatives within the next three weeks. Once the bill passes a full House vote, the U.S. Senate will need to vote on the bill in order to move it to the President’s desk to become law.
The American Counseling Association would like to thank our ACA advocates and our bill supporters for helping this bill move forward in the United States House of Representatives.