Committee to Continue Work on Guardianship, Alzheimer's Disease, Children's Mental Health -

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Committee to Continue Work on Guardianship, Alzheimer's Disease, Children's Mental Health

Tuesday, March 1, 2016/Categories: Legislative Branch/Tags: Children Families Health & Human Services Interim

The Children, Families, Health, and Human Services Interim Committee will work on its three studies and hear about proposed legislation for pain patients when it meets March 10-11 in Helena.

The committee will take up the Senate Joint Resolution 22 study of guardianship and Alzheimer's disease during the morning of March 10. Members will discuss the House Bill 422 study of children's mental health outcomes that afternoon.

Presentations for the SJR 22 study will cover policy suggestions from the Montana Alzheimer’s Work Group, examples of how two other states provide training to guardians, and ways to prevent the financial exploitation of a person under guardianship.

HB 422 requires the committee to propose a pilot project to improve and track children's mental health outcomes. In January, the committee decided to focus on outcomes related to whether children are in school, at home, and out of trouble.

In March, mental health providers will discuss ideas for measuring outcomes in those three areas. The committee also will hear about the kinds of data that must be gathered for measurement.

On March 11, the committee will hear information for its Senate Bill 418 study of legislative mental health investments. The 2015 Legislature increased funding for several types of community mental health services. SB 418 requires the committee to monitor and evaluate how the Department of Public Health and Human Services is implementing the new funding.

DPHHS officials will outline how the money has been spent to date. They'll also review admissions data for the Montana State Hospital. A panel of providers will discuss whether DPHHS is meeting SB 418 objectives for paying for services and working with providers.

The committee's agenda also includes:

 -- an update from Dr. Eric Arzubi of the Billings Clinic on efforts to create a Montana training track for psychiatric medical students;

-- a presentation on a proposed Pain Patients' Bill of Rights; and

 -- an update from DPHHS Director Richard Opper on the agency's activities.

The committee will meet at 9 a.m. on March 10 in Room 137 of the Capitol in Helena. The meeting will continue at 8 a.m. on March 11. 

For an agenda and related materials, visit the committee's website at or contact Sue O'Connell, committee staff, at 406-444-3597 or


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