SECTION 1. Notwithstanding any general or special law to the contrary, the department of mental health is hereby authorized and directed to conduct a study of the feasibility of providing peer run respite services. Said study shall include, but not be limited to, the need for such services, the scope of services to be offered, costs associated with providing such services, and financing mechanisms. Said study shall also evaluate the benefits and barriers of implementing peer run respite services. In preparing the results of said study, the department shall review peer run respite models in other states and consult with members of the mental health community including, but not limited to, M-POWER, Inc., Transformation Center, The Recovery Learning Communities of Massachusetts, the Emergency Room Rights Committee, MASS Wellness Recovery Action Plan, NAMI of Massachusetts, Mental Health and Substance Abuse Corporations of Massachusetts, the Massachusetts Association for Mental Health, and the Massachusetts Mental Health Coalition. The results of said study shall be submitted to the joint committee on mental health and substance abuse, the joint committee on health care financing, the house and senate committees on ways and means, and the house and senate clerk not later than December 31, 2010.
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