action opportunities

Thursday 5/4 Action Opportunities

May the 4th be with you! In honor of Carrie Fisher, today we have a few healthcare action opportunities, focusing in particular on mental health and addiction.

1. S. 448, the “Medicare Mental Health Access Act,” would allow Medicare to treat psychologists as physicians “for purposes of furnishing clinical psychologist services under the Medicare program.” This would make it easier for people to access mental health care and prescriptions under Medicare. The bill has bipartisan sponsors. Let’s contact our Senators and ask them to consider becoming sponsors and to support the bill.

  • Kaine: Washington DC: 202–224–4024, Manasses 703–361–3192, Roanoke 540–682–5693, Virginia Beach 757–518–1674, Richmond 804–771–2221, Abingdon 276–525–4790, Danville 434-792–0976, and his contact form is here.
  • Warner: Washington DC 202-224-2023, Roanoke 540-857-2676, Abingdon 276-628-8158, Norfolk 757-441-3079, Richmond 804-775-2314, Vienna 703-442-0670. His “Submit Comment” form is here.
  • Suggested script: “Hello, my name is ____ and my zip code is _____. I am contacting the senator today about S. 448, the ‘Medicare Mental Health Access Act.’ This bill would allow clinical psychologists to be treated as physicians under the Medicare program, which would make it easier for mental health patients to access medications and care. Mental healthcare is important. Please support this bill and consider becoming a cosponsor. Thank you.”

2. H.R. 1253, the “Mental Health and Substance Abuse Treatment Accessibility Act of 2017,” has been introduced in the House and referred to committee. This bill would allow the Secretary of Health and Human Services to finance the renovation and construction of existing and new mental health facilities and facilities which treat substance abuse and addiction. Addiction is a major public health problem and people need access to better facilities and care. Let’s contact Goodlatte and tell him we support this bill and want him to do so, too. 

  • Goodlatte: Staunton (540) 885-3861, Harrisonburg (540) 432-2391, Lynchburg (434) 845-8306, Roanoke (540) 857-2672, Washington DC 202-225-5431 and email form here.
  • Suggested script: “Hello, my name is ______ and my email is ______. I am contacting Rep. Goodlatte today about H.R. 1253, the “Mental Health and Substance Abuse Treatment Accessibility Act of 2017,” which would fund renovation and construction of mental healthcare facilities and substance abuse and addiction treatment facilities. This bill has bipartisan support and I encourage Rep. Goodlatte to sign his name to the list of cosponsors. Mental health and substance abuse are serious public health issues and should be given our full attention. Thank you.”

3. The new and not-improved version of the ACA repeal bill will be voted on in the House today. This bill, among other things, allows states to opt out of providing coverage for those with preexisting conditions. Additionally, premiums for those who are sick or with preexisting conditions such as asthma are expected to rise prohibitively. Contact Goodlatte and tell him this newest version of the repeal bill is still unacceptable. 

  • Goodlatte: Staunton (540) 885-3861, Harrisonburg (540) 432-2391, Lynchburg (434) 845-8306, Roanoke (540) 857-2672, Washington DC 202-225-5431 and email form here.
  • Suggested script: “Hello, my name is _____ and my email is ______. I am contacting Rep. Goodlatte today about the newest version of the ACA repeal bill. I urge the representative to vote NO on putting those with preexisting conditions at risk. This bill is no better than the one introduced earlier this year. Thank you.”

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