Committee to Continue Review of Bill Drafts on Guardianship, Alzheimer's Disease - news.mt.gov

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Committee to Continue Review of Bill Drafts on Guardianship, Alzheimer's Disease

Thursday, June 9, 2016/Categories: Legislative Branch/Tags: Children Families Health & Human Services Interim

HELENA -- A legislative committee will determine whether and how to proceed with several bill drafts related to guardianship matters and Alzheimer's disease when it meets June 20 in Helena.

The Children, Families, Health, and Human Services Interim Committee will consider various options related to bill drafts it first reviewed in May. The bills are designed to strengthen guardianship laws and programs and to increase services for the growing number of Montanans who are expected to suffer from Alzheimer's disease or other dementias in the coming years.

The committee also will continue work on studies related to children's mental health outcomes and the use of new money appropriated in 2015 for a variety of community mental health services.

The committee will discuss the guardianship and Alzheimer's bill drafts during the afternoon on June 20. The bills would:

  • strengthen financial protections for vulnerable adults;
  • create an avenue for establishing a working interdisciplinary network of guardianship stakeholders to review and propose improvements to Montana's guardianship laws and services;
  • increase Medicaid-funded services provided in the home or community to individuals who would otherwise be in need of nursing home care; and
  • fund efforts to train volunteers to provide respite care, support Alzheimer's-related activities undertaken by area agencies on aging, and ensure that services to individuals with Alzheimer's disease or other dementias are coordinated.

During the morning, the committee will hear from representatives of private companies about the work they do in collecting and analyzing data. The committee asked for the presentations as part of the House Bill 422 study of children's mental health outcomes. Members have been reviewing options for collecting outcomes data as a means of evaluating the services being provided to children.

The committee also will hear an update from the Department of Public Health and Human Services about the use of new money appropriated by the 2015 Legislature to increase community mental health services. The committee then will consider draft findings and recommendations to the next Legislature. Members also will review a bill draft to require Medicaid coverage of drug therapy management services provided by clinical pharmacist practitioners.

The meeting will begin at 8 a.m. in Room 137 of the Capitol. For an agenda and related materials, visit the committee's website at www.leg.mt.gov/cfhhs or contact Sue O'Connell, committee staff, at 406-444-3597 or soconnell@mt.gov.

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