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House Passes Mental Health Package with Curtis Support

Today, Representative John Curtis (UT-03) applauded the efforts of House Republicans and Democrats on the Energy & Commerce Committee to pass the first major mental health legislation since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. This bipartisan legislation is the product of work by the House Energy and Commerce Committee, on which Representative Curtis serves and participates.

“Our nation is facing substantial mental health challenges and this legislation is the first major bipartisan effort since COVID to address it,” said Rep. Curtis. “Children struggling with stress, anxiety, and social isolation due to unneeded school closures will get the help they deserve in a targeted manner, and it even lowers the federal deficit in the process.”

Passage of this legislation reauthorizes many programs through the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) and Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) and improves access to mental health services for children on Medicaid.

The Restoring Hope for Mental Health and Well-Being Act introduced by Republican Leader Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA) and Chairman Frank Pallone (D-NJ), includes provisions led by House Republicans to improve patient access to mental health and substance use disorder (SUD) services.

This supports communities providing care to people in need of hope and healing since government COVID-19 policies and school shutdowns created a worsening mental health crisis in America.

In addition, the Restoring Hope for Mental Health and Well-Being Act:

  • Is fiscally responsible and reduces the deficit by $200 million, completely offsetting new spending.
  • Authorizes $1.91 billion annually for fiscal 2023 through 2027 for the Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment Block Grant (SABG), and would rename it the Substance Use Prevention, Treatment, and Recovery Services Block Grant.
  • Authorizes $857.6 million annually for fiscal 2023 through 2027 for the Community Mental Health Services Block Grant (CMHS).
  • require all nonfederal governmental health plans to comply with mental health insurance parity rules and eliminate the need for doctors to obtain waivers to prescribe detoxification treatments.
  • Protects charitable choice for religious organizations.