The award recognizes Whitehouse’s leadership in support of two key pieces of legislation affecting mental health practice. The Behavioral Health Information Technology Act of 2011 would grant psychiatrists working in psychiatric hospitals, community mental health centers, and addiction treatment facilities the same critical Medicare or Medicaid rebates toward the purchase of electronic medical record systems for which other physicians are eligible. He also backed the Children’s Hospitals Education Equity Act, which makes a technical fix to the Children’s Graduate Medical Education (GME) Program, which currently excludes certain psychiatric hospitals from federal GME funding. The new bill would make several dozen additional psychiatric residencies across the country eligible for critical GME support.
To read about threats to Medicare funding of graduate medical education in Psychiatric News, click here.
(photo: office of Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse)