Jun 06, 2020
Advocates: I know you are tired. But the pressure is working! In his amendment to HF 2192, Senator Edler has increased the reimbursement rate for telehealth services for mental health services. We aren’t at 100% yet, but we are getting there. (The rate for the medical providers is way less – I don’t know that they are going to be happy with this amendment.)
Email received from the Iowa Senate at 10:54 pm Friday night:
“There will be no debate in the Senate on Monday, June 8th:
We will reconvene on Tuesday, June 9th at 9:00 am. A Senate Daily Schedule email will be sent on Monday evening.”
What exactly does this mean? I am not sure – but it seems that they are feeling the heat of your advocacy.
ACTION ITEMS regarding telehealth – If you have done the first, work your way down the list to find one you haven’t completed.
- If you have any hard data about how telehealth has impacted your practice (particularly financially), please send that to Senator Edler (it seems that he is getting his data from the insurance companies). Thank him for his work on this issue; explain to him firmly but kindly why telehealth needs to be reimbursed at 100% of office rates. firstname.lastname@example.org
- Email YOUR Senator (work address and/or home address) and tell them your story about how telehealth has impacted your practice. Find your Legislator
- Email Senator Liz Mathis – she is fighting very hard on this issue. Give her the data that she needs to continue this work. Thank her for her work. She is an excellent ally on so, so many of issues important to providers and our clients. email@example.com
- Feel the need to do something positive? Email Rep. Joel Fry LISW and THANK HIM for working on the telethealth reimbursement rates. Send him your data as well. He may need to back up his arguments. Edler is amending Fry’s bill. If the bill is successful in the Senate, it will need to go back to the House. firstname.lastname@example.org
- Email the rest of the House social work delegation. They have our backs. Give them the data they need to help us fight for this in the House. Thank them for bringing the social work perspective to their work in the legislature.
Rep. Marti Anderson, LISW email@example.com
Rep. Mark D. Smith, LISW firstname.lastname@example.org
Rep. Ross Wilburn, MSW Ross.Wilburn@legis.iowa.gov
- Done all this? Adopt a Senator and send them your data and stories. They all need to hear this. Build a relationship with that Senator. https://www.legis.iowa.gov/legislators/senate
- Smeone on the Human Resources committee would be a good target:
- Or a member of the leadership
Senate President Charles Schneider email@example.com
Senate Majority Leader Jack Whitver firstname.lastname@example.org
FYI – NASW IA advocacy alerts for now can be found at naswia.socialworkers.org under the NEWLETTERS. It seems a little easier to read and find things. See Thurs. June 4 Action alert on Telehealth for more talking points.
Thank you for all you do! Keeping pushing! Let’s not lose any momentum over the weekend.