On April 21, the New York City Council Committee on Mental Health, Disability and Addictions and Committee on State and Federal Legislation held a joint oversight hearing on “Coordination of the State and City in the Provision of Mental Health Services.” Linda Lee (D-Queens) and Shaun Abreu (D-Manhattan) are the respective committee chairs.
Council members highlighted inadequate reimbursement for behavioral health services from insurers and Medicaid. NYC Health + Hospitals testified about its experience providing these services throughout the pandemic, particularly via telehealth. The City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene described its outreach efforts and work to address the opioid epidemic. GNYHA Vice President Alison Burke testified about the challenges behavioral health service providers face and the major new behavioral health investments in this year’s New York State budget (attached). GNYHA is hopeful that these investments will strengthen inpatient and outpatient behavioral health services, address inadequate reimbursement, and support the recruitment and retention of highly qualified behavioral health workers.