Reach Out PA: Wolf Administration Seeks Input from Providers on Barriers to Mental Health and Substance Use Disorder Treatment

first_imgReach Out PA: Wolf Administration Seeks Input from Providers on Barriers to Mental Health and Substance Use Disorder Treatment February 07, 2020 SHARE Email Facebook Twittercenter_img Press Release,  Public Health Governor Tom Wolf announced today that the Insurance Department, in partnership with multiple state agencies, released a survey asking health care providers for input on their experiences with barriers to mental health and substance use disorder treatment.Under the governor’s Reach Out PA: Your Mental Health Matters initiative, the Wolf Administration is undertaking a long-term, statewide campaign that seeks to educate and empower Pennsylvania providers and consumers about consumer rights under state and federal parity laws.“The results from this survey will allow us to better inform and collaborate with providers, advocates and personnel on the front lines,” said Gov. Wolf. “Their experiences will help us enhance resources, develop more tools and create learning opportunities that will help serve the providers’ needs, which will ultimately help those in need of mental wellness services.”For more than a decade, state and federal laws have required that treatment and services provided for mental health and substance use disorders must not have limitations that are stricter than those applied to medical/surgical treatments. Recent market conduct examinations of Pennsylvania insurers, however, have indicated that there are noncompliant barriers that are limiting consumers’ ability to access the treatment they need for mental health and substance use disorders.“While complicated in its wording, both state and federal law are very clear that inequitable barriers to mental health and substance use disorder treatment will not be permitted,” said Insurance Commissioner Jessica Altman. “Through our market conduct examinations, we have found that many insurers have placed limitations on treatment that are stricter than state and federal parity requirements allow.”The Wolf Administration is looking for feedback from mental health and substance use disorder providers, as well as other providers who have heard from patients that they have run into barriers when seeking treatment. The survey, developed by a working group of staff from the Insurance Department, and departments of Health (DOH), Human Services (DHS), Drug and Alcohol Programs (DDAP), State, Aging, the Office of the Attorney General and the Governor’s Office, will be sent to providers across the commonwealth.The survey requests specific instances regarding complaints providers have heard from their patients about barriers to access. The survey also includes questions about providers’ experiences with barriers to treatment and problems with reimbursement for mental health and substance use disorder services. The aggregate data will be used to identify and address areas of concern by creating more accessible resources, included what is needed to help providers and other stakeholders learn more about parity.“We often hear of struggles when providers seek authorization from insurers for substance use disorder treatment, particularly opioid use disorder treatment,” said DDAP Secretary Jennifer Smith. “We hope to get a better understanding of trends and how best to address them.”“Providers typically have trusted relationships with their older adult patients that can be used to overcome stigma to seeking services and to help them gain access to mental health and substance abuse disorder treatments,” said Department of Aging Secretary Robert Torres. “We want all providers to have a knowledge base that empowers them to point their patients in the right direction.”“The process for determining whether parity protections are being followed is incredibly detailed and requires data that is best identified by mental health and substance use disorder providers,” said DOH Secretary Rachel Levine. “Using the insights we gain from this survey, we will be able to give our providers better tools to empower their patients and clients.”“Ensuring that mental health services are accessible to all Pennsylvanians is a critical step as we work to break down stigma and other barriers that keep people away from treatment,” said DHS Secretary Teresa Miller. “We need people to know that when they are ready to seek help, they will be met with support, not obstacles. This survey will help identify areas to improvement to ensure that people can access the help they need.”The survey specific to providers will be sent directly to the e-mail addresses provided to the Department of State through the licensing process. The Insurance Department will be accepting survey responses through March 4, 2020. For more information about the survey, individuals can e-mail RA-IN-Parity-PID@pa.gov.Since its introduction at the beginning of the year, Reach Out PA efforts have included a new consumer feedback form launched on January 23, and publication of a proposed regulation to enhance mental health parity reporting requirements for commercial health insurers. In just 10 days, more than 1,000 Pennsylvanians have completed the online form, offering input and suggestions, many of which detail challenges to accessing mental health services and pointing to potential parity violations.Resources are available on agency websites, including information on substance use disorder and mental health coverage. More information and videos on parity can be found on insurance.pa.gov. These resources will be updated and expanded based on responses to the survey.last_img read more

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Angels lose to A’s after key double error by Andrelton Simmons

first_imgTrout hit a 437-foot homer in the first inning, and the Angels got another run in the second. They could have had more, but Upton made the first out of the inning on an ill-advised attempt to go to third base on a single to left-center.After the Angels fell behind on the Chapman homer, they got single runs in the fourth, fifth and sixth.Pujols and Upton hit solo homers, sandwiched around a bloop RBI double by Shohei Ohtani in the fifth.Upton also singled and walked in what was an encouraging night for him at the plate. He came into the game hitting .135 in his previous 11 games, although now he’s homered in back-to-back games.The Angels left two runners in the fifth and sixth, and Simmons ended the eighth by hitting into a double play. The Angels would fight back to tie the score a few innings later, but they ended up losing anyway when Noé Ramírez gave up two runs in the sixth.Barría bounced back from his misplaced pitch to Chapman, retiring six of the next seven hitters. Barría ended up lasting four innings, charged with four earned runs. It was a step back after two consecutive games in which he’d allowed two runs and pitched at least five innings.“He was just OK tonight,” Manager Brad Ausmus said of Barría. “The one thing he did the last two innings was use his changeup more frequently vs. righties which was good to see. They got ahold of a couple balls. Chapman’s was the big blow.”The Angels took him off the hook for the loss by doing some damage against Mike Fiers, who continued an impressive streak.Fiers, who left with a 5-4 lead, has now made 21 straight starts without a loss, equaling the franchise record set by Hall of Famer Lefty Grove with the Philadelphia A’s.Although the Angels didn’t end Fiers streak, they didn’t let him beat them either.Related Articles Angels’ Shohei Ohtani spending downtime working in outfield Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error Angels’ Mike Trout working on his defense, thanks to Twitter PreviousLos Angeles Angels’ Albert Pujols, right, embraces Mike Trout after hitting a home run off Oakland Athletics’ Mike Fiers during the fourth inning of a baseball game Tuesday, Sept. 3, 2019, in Oakland, Calif. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)OAKLAND, CA – SEPTEMBER 03: Jaime Barria #51 of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim pitches against the Oakland Athletics in the bottom of the first inning at Ring Central Coliseum on September 3, 2019 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)Oakland Athletics pitcher Mike Fiers works against the Los Angeles Angels during the first inning of a baseball game Tuesday, Sept. 3, 2019, in Oakland, Calif. (AP Photo/Ben Margot) SoundThe gallery will resume insecondsOAKLAND, CA – SEPTEMBER 03: Mike Trout #27 of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim swings and watches the flight of his ball as he hits a solo home run against the Oakland Athletics in the top of the first inning at Ring Central Coliseum on September 3, 2019 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)Los Angeles Angels’ Mike Trout watches his home run off Oakland Athletics pitcher Mike Fiers during the first inning of a baseball game Tuesday, Sept. 3, 2019, in Oakland, Calif. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)Oakland Athletics pitcher Mike Fiers (50) watches Los Angeles Angels’ Mike Trout, right, after giving up a home run to Trout during the first inning of a baseball game Tuesday, Sept. 3, 2019, in Oakland, Calif. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)Los Angeles Angels’ Mike Trout, right, is congratulated by Shohei Ohtani (17) after hitting a home run off Oakland Athletics pitcher Mike Fiers during the first inning of a baseball game Tuesday, Sept. 3, 2019, in Oakland, Calif. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)Los Angeles Angels’ Mike Trout, right, is congratulated by Kole Calhoun after hitting a home run off Oakland Athletics pitcher Mike Fiers during the first inning of a baseball game Tuesday, Sept. 3, 2019, in Oakland, Calif. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)Los Angeles Angels pitcher Jaime Barria works against the Oakland Athletics during the first inning of a baseball game Tuesday, Sept. 3, 2019, in Oakland, Calif. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)OAKLAND, CA – SEPTEMBER 03: David Fletcher #6 of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim gets caught in a rundown and tagged out by Marcus Semien #10 of the Oakland Athletics in the top of the third inning at Ring Central Coliseum on September 3, 2019 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)OAKLAND, CA – SEPTEMBER 03: Andrelton Simmons #2 of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim hits an rbi single scoring Kole Calhoun #56 against the Oakland Athletics in the top of the second inning at Ring Central Coliseum on September 3, 2019 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)OAKLAND, CA – SEPTEMBER 03: Shohei Ohtani #17 of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim breaks his bat grounding into a double play against the Oakland Athletics in the top of the third inning at Ring Central Coliseum on September 3, 2019 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)Los Angeles Angels’ Shohei Ohtani holds on to his broken bat after grounding into a double play during the third inning of the team’s baseball game against the Oakland Athletics on Tuesday, Sept. 3, 2019, in Oakland, Calif. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)Oakland Athletics’ Seth Brown (65) celebrates between Los Angeles Angels’ David Fletcher, right, and third base umpire Alex Tosi after hitting an RBI triple during the second inning of a baseball game Tuesday, Sept. 3, 2019, in Oakland, Calif. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)Oakland Athletics’ Matt Chapman connects for a three-run home run off Los Angeles Angels’ Jaime Barria during the third inning of a baseball game Tuesday, Sept. 3, 2019, in Oakland, Calif. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)Oakland Athletics’ Matt Chapman, right, celebrates with Robbie Grossman (8) after hitting a three-run home run off Los Angeles Angels’ Jaime Barria during the third inning of a baseball game Tuesday, Sept. 3, 2019, in Oakland, Calif. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)OAKLAND, CA – SEPTEMBER 03: Matt Chapman #26 of the Oakland Athletics is congratulated by Marcus Semien #10 and Mark Canha #20 after Chapman hit a three-run home run against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim in the bottom of the third inning at Ring Central Coliseum on September 3, 2019 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)Los Angeles Angels’ Albert Pujols celebrates after hitting a home run off Oakland Athletics’ Mike Fiers during the fourth inning of a baseball game Tuesday, Sept. 3, 2019, in Oakland, Calif. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)Los Angeles Angels’ Albert Pujols, right, embraces Mike Trout after hitting a home run off Oakland Athletics’ Mike Fiers during the fourth inning of a baseball game Tuesday, Sept. 3, 2019, in Oakland, Calif. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)OAKLAND, CA – SEPTEMBER 03: Jaime Barria #51 of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim pitches against the Oakland Athletics in the bottom of the first inning at Ring Central Coliseum on September 3, 2019 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)NextShow Caption1 of 18OAKLAND, CA – SEPTEMBER 03: Jaime Barria #51 of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim pitches against the Oakland Athletics in the bottom of the first inning at Ring Central Coliseum on September 3, 2019 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)ExpandOAKLAND — This Angels’ season has gone so far in the wrong direction that Andrelton Simmons’ defense turned out to be costly in a loss.Simmons is a four-time Gold Glove winner and generally considered to be one of the best defensive shortstops in the majors, but he was charged with two errors on one play at a key moment in the Angels’ 7-5 loss to the Oakland A’s on Tuesday night.It overshadowed homers by Mike Trout – No. 44, tying for the major league lead – and Albert Pujols and Justin Upton.The score was tied 2-2 in the third inning when the A’s had a runner at first and no outs.center_img Angels offense breaks out to split doubleheader with Astros Jose Suarez’s rocky start sinks Angels in loss to Astros Angels’ poor pitching spoils an Albert Pujols milestone Robbie Grossman hit a sharp one-hopper to Simmons, who was shifted to the right side of second base. The ball took a tough hop and bounced off Simmons’ chest and rolled away. Simmons then tried to salvage something out of the play, but he made an errant flip over the head of third baseman David Fletcher at second.“Unfortunately, Fletcher is not LeBron James, so he didn’t catch it,” Simmons said. “I know that was a big play in the game. I’ve just got to be better.”Simmons was charged with an error for failing to catch the ball, and another for the flip.Instead of turning a double play, the Angels got no outs and there were runners at second and third.Jaime Barría then hung a slider that Matt Chapman blasted over the center field fence, for a three-run homer to put the A’s ahead 5-2.last_img read more

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