SECTION 1. Notwithstanding any general or special law, rule or regulation to the contrary, the Office of Medicaid shall develop a streamlined process to enhance the current community-based behavioral health screening process and direct Medicaid contracted health insurers, health plans, health maintenance organizations, behavioral health management firms and third party administrators under contract to a Medicaid managed care organization or the Medicaid primary care clinician plans to allow admission to inpatient behavioral health services from a community-based setting where a patient is presenting with a behavioral health condition that requires such admission but does not require a medical screening examination in an emergency department. Said process shall be developed after consultation with a working group that includes representatives from the Association for Behavioral Healthcare, Massachusetts College of Emergency Physicians, Massachusetts Psychiatric Society, Massachusetts Health and Hospital Association, National Alliance on Mental Illness, the Massachusetts Association of Behavioral Health Systems, and all applicable carriers that cover such services. The Office of Medicaid shall file a report on the status of the working group, progress of the streamlined process, and, if necessary, legislative recommendations with the clerks of the senate and house of representatives, the house and senate chairs of the joint committee on mental health, substance use and recovery, the joint committee on public health, the joint committee on health care financing and the house and senate committees on ways and means no later than six months after the first meeting of the working group. A report of the final implemented streamlined process shall be filed with said committees no later than July 31, 2020.
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