In December, 2021, New York Governor Kathy Hochul signed two new bills into law which will greatly expand coverage under the State’s Medicaid program.
The first new law, which will take effect on March 21, 2022, will amend the New York Social Services Law to provide that the care and services provided in New York by licensed clinical social workers will be eligible for coverage under the Medicaid program. Once the law is effective, licensed clinical social workers will be able to bill Medicaid directly for their services within their scope of practice. Licensed clinical social workers in New York have a broad scope of practice in the State and are authorized to practice mental health counseling, marriage and family therapy, creative arts therapy, and psychoanalysis. As a result, this new law should assist in greatly broadening access for individuals to critical mental health services across the State – especially at this critical time when so many individuals have been adversely impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The second, related new law, which will take effect on March 29, 2022, will amend the New York Social Services Law to permit mental health practitioners licensed under Article 163 of the New York Education Law to bill Medicaid directly for their services within their scope of practice. Mental health practitioners include mental health counselors, marriage and family therapists, creative arts therapists, and psychoanalysts. It is significant to point out that this new law does not modify or expand the existing scope of practice of any of these mental health practitioners under New York law. As noted in the New York State Senate Memorandum in support of this new legislation, one of the main justifications for enacting this new legislation is to prevent “undue hardship for individuals, families, and communities” and to address the existing “lack of transparency in Medicaid billing.”
Our Firm has extensive experience counseling health care providers on scope of practice, Medicaid eligibility, and other compliance requirements, as well as preparing and implementing applicable policies. If you have any questions related to this Legal Briefing, please contact any member of our Firm at 585-730-4773. Please note that any embedded links to other documents may expire in the future.
This Legal Briefing is intended for general informational and educational purposes only and should not be considered legal advice or counsel. The substance of this Legal Briefing is not intended to cover all legal issues or developments regarding the matter. Please consult with an attorney to ascertain how these new developments may relate to you or your business. © 2022 Law Offices of Pullano & Farrow PLLC