SB495 (2024) Detail

Relative to certification of alcohol and other drug use treatment facilities.


SB 495-FN - AS AMENDED BY THE SENATE

 

02/08/2024   0407s

04/11/2024   1420s

2024 SESSION

24-2878

05/08

 

SENATE BILL 495-FN

 

AN ACT relative to certification of alcohol and other drug use treatment facilities.

 

SPONSORS: Sen. Carson, Dist 14; Sen. Avard, Dist 12; Sen. Altschiller, Dist 24; Sen. Whitley, Dist 15; Sen. Birdsell, Dist 19; Sen. Bradley, Dist 3; Rep. Nagel, Belk. 6; Rep. Schapiro, Ches. 16

 

COMMITTEE: Health and Human Services

 

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AMENDED ANALYSIS

 

This bill provides for certification of substance use treatment programs by the department of health and human services.  The bill also directs the department to establish within the office of the ombudsman, a behavioral health specialist dedicated to complaint investigations regarding substance use and mental health treatment programs.

 

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Explanation: Matter added to current law appears in bold italics.

Matter removed from current law appears [in brackets and struckthrough.]

Matter which is either (a) all new or (b) repealed and reenacted appears in regular type.

02/08/2024   0407s

04/11/2024   1420s 24-2878

05/08

 

STATE OF NEW HAMPSHIRE

 

In the Year of Our Lord Two Thousand Twenty Four

 

AN ACT relative to certification of alcohol and other drug use treatment facilities.

 

Be it Enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court convened:

 

1  New Hampshire Substance Use Disorder Services System.  Amend RSA 172:1, IX-a to read as follows:

IX-a. "Client" means a person who voluntarily seeks substance abuse treatment [as provided by the office of alcohol and drug abuse prevention through its agents or substance abuse treatment contractors].

2  New Hampshire Substance Use Disorder Services System.  Amend RSA 172:1, XXIV to read as follows:

XXIV. "Certified substance abuse treatment facility" means a facility [funded in part or in whole by the office of alcohol and drug abuse prevention, and] certified or licensed by the department of health and human services under rules adopted pursuant to RSA 541-A.

3  New Hampshire Substance Use Disorder Services System.  Amend RSA 172:2-a to read as follows:

172:2-a  State Substance Use Disorder Services System Established.

I.  The commissioner shall provide for the scientific care, treatment, and rehabilitation of individuals with substance use disorders and their families, and work towards the prevention of, and assist in the control of, alcohol and drug misuse within the state through education, treatment, community organization, and research.  The department shall establish, maintain, implement, and coordinate a system of substance use disorder treatment services under this chapter.  This system shall be supervised by the commissioner.  [With the exception of a youth drug treatment center required to be operated by a non-governmental entity at the Sununu youth services center, at the discretion of the commissioner,]  The department may directly operate and administer any program or facility which provides, or which may be established to provide, services to persons with substance use disorders or may enter into a contract with any individual, partnership, association, public or private, for profit or nonprofit, agency or corporation for the operation and administration of any such program or facility.

II.  Subject to available funding, the commissioner shall establish, pursuant to rules adopted under RSA 541-A, a certification process for substance use treatment programs and facilities operating in the state of New Hampshire.  Programs and facilities required to be certified shall include, but not be limited to those providing early intervention treatment, outpatient treatment, intensive outpatient and partial hospitalization treatment, residential treatment, and medically managed intensive treatment.  Independent providers, facilities licensed under RSA 151, the programs and facilities in the system of mental health services established by RSA 135-C:3, and other providers identified by the commissioner shall be exempt from certification.

III.  The commissioner shall adopt rules under RSA 541-A, relative to:

(a)  Certification procedures, requirements, and exemptions for substance use treatment programs and facilities.

(b)  Certification and renewal fees.

(c)  The scope and content of training requirements for substance use treatment programs and providers.

(d)  The scope and content of education materials for providers and clients to understand complaint procedures.

(e)  Public access to findings of investigatory and monitoring reports, and final decisions made relative to certification.

IV.  All fees received from certification under this section shall be kept in a nonlapsing fund known as the substance use treatment certification fund, which shall be kept separate and distinct from all other funds.  The fund shall be continually appropriated to the department of health and human services to fund to the certification process for substance use treatment programs and facilities operating in the state of New Hampshire.  The commissioner may accept gifts, grants, donations, or other funding from any source and shall deposit all such revenue received into the fund.  The state treasurer shall invest the moneys deposited in the fund as provided by law.  Interest earned on moneys deposited in the fund shall be deposited into the fund.

V.  The department shall maintain and regularly update on its website a publicly available listing of all programs and facilities certified under this chapter.

4  New Subparagraph; Dedicated Funds; Substance Use Treatment Certification Fund.  Amend RSA 6:12, I(b) by inserting after subparagraph (394) the following new subparagraph:

(395)  Moneys deposited in the substance use treatment certification fund under RSA 172:2-a.  

5  New Hampshire Substance Use Disorder Services System.  Amend RSA 172:2-c to read as follows:

172:2-c  Community Substance Use Disorder Treatment Programs.

I.  Any city, county, town, or any individual, partnership, association, public or private, for profit or nonprofit, agency or corporation may establish and administer a community substance use disorder treatment program for the purpose of providing substance use disorder treatment services to individuals, families, and organizations in the area.  Every program shall, at a minimum, provide substance use disorder screening and evaluation, case management, and outpatient counseling services.  The department may contract with a community substance use disorder treatment program, pursuant to RSA 172:2-a, for the operation and administration of any services that are part of the state substance use disorder treatment system.  In the event that the commissioner decides to enter into a contract for the operation and administration of any services which are part of the state substance use disorder treatment system, the contract shall contain standards designed to measure the performance of the contractor in achieving positive consumer outcomes, maintaining fiscal integrity, and providing quality services.  The commissioner shall adopt rules, pursuant to RSA 172:8-b, to establish criteria for designating substance use disorder treatment programs under this chapter.

II.  No person may establish, maintain, operate, or conduct any program or facility for substance use treatment without any certification required by the department under RSA 172:2-a.  

III.  Every facility or program certified under RSA 172:2-a shall pay a certification fee to the commissioner for deposit in the fund established under RSA 172:2-a.

6  Department of Health and Human Services, Department Established; Office of the Ombudsman.  Amend RSA 126-A:4, III to read as follows:

III.  The department shall establish an office of the ombudsman to provide assistance to clients of the department by investigating and resolving complaints regarding any matter within the jurisdiction of the department including services or assistance provided by the department or its contractors.  The ombudsman's office may provide mediation or other means for informally resolving complaints.  The records of the ombudsman's office shall be confidential and shall not be disclosed without the consent of the client on whose behalf the complaint is made, except as may be necessary to assist the service provider to resolve the complaint, or as required by law.  Subject to available funding, the department shall designate within the office of the ombudsman a person as the behavioral health specialist dedicated solely to investigate and resolve complaints to promote the health, safety, welfare, or civil or human rights of any person receiving the treatment or services of a substance use or mental health treatment facility.

7  Repeal.  The following are repealed:

I.  RSA 172:1, XXV, relative to the definition of certified alcohol and drug abuse counselor.

II.  RSA 171:2, XXIX, relative to the definition of designated drug counselor.

8  Effective Date.  This act shall take effect upon its passage.

 

LBA

24-2878

Revised 3/19/24

Amended 2/20/24

 

 

SB 495-FN- FISCAL NOTE

AS AMENDED BY THE SENATE (AMENDMENT #2024-0407s)

 

AN ACT relative to certification of alcohol and other drug use treatment facilities.

 

FISCAL IMPACT:      [ X ] State              [    ] County               [    ] Local              [    ] None

 

 

Estimated State Impact - Increase / (Decrease)

 

FY 2024

FY 2025

FY 2026

FY 2027

Revenue

$0

$0

$342,000

$351,000

Revenue Fund(s)

Substance use center certification fees

Expenditures

$0

$383,000 general funds

$342,000 special funds

$351,000 special funds

Funding Source(s)

General Fund

Substance Use Treatment and Certification Fund

Appropriations

$0

$0

$0

$0

Funding Source(s)

None

Does this bill provide sufficient funding to cover estimated expenditures? [X] See Below

Does this bill authorize new positions to implement this bill? [X] Yes

 

METHODOLOGY:

This bill establishes a certification process for substance use treatment programs and facilities operating in the state of New Hampshire.  The Department of Health and Human Services would be required to maintain a publicly available listing of all certified programs and facilities, as well as all investigatory reports, monitoring reports, and final decisions made relative to certification.  In addition, the bill establishes a new substance use treatment certification fund. All fees received from certification will be kept in the separate fund.  The Department assumes that certification rates will be based on the revenue needed to support operation of the program. Finally, the bill establishes a behavioral health ombudsman within the Department.

 

The Department states that although the total number of substance use treatment agencies is unknown, there are 65 individual organizations enrolled with Medicaid as substance use disorder outpatient groups or programs, with a total of 106 separate sites.  There are also agencies that are not enrolled with Medicaid, as well as fluctuation in agencies opening and closing over time.  In addition, the bill includes residential facilities within its definition of treatment programs and facilities.  The Department estimates a total of 50-150 agencies in need of certification, requiring four additional staff: three Licensing and Evaluation Coordinators and one Supervisor IV, at a total cost of $333,000 in FY25, $342,000 in FY26, and $351,000 in FY27. The Department notes that although the program is intended to be self-funded through the substance use treatment and certification fund, the positions will need to be filled before any revenues are received, resulting in a general fund cost in the first year of implementation.

 

With respect to the establishment of a behavioral health ombudsman, the Department did not provide an estimated cost.  Instead, the Department stated that it would be able to handle the new responsibilities within the existing Department-wide ombudsman's office, at a cost of $50,000 to provide training to ombudsman personnel.  

 

AGENCIES CONTACTED:

Department of Health and Human Services

 

Amendments

Date Amendment
Jan. 31, 2024 2024-0407s
April 3, 2024 2024-1420s

Links


Date Body Type
Jan. 17, 2024 Senate Hearing
Feb. 8, 2024 Senate Floor Vote
April 11, 2024 Senate Floor Vote
April 17, 2024 House Hearing
April 17, 2024 House Exec Session

Bill Text Revisions

SB495 Revision: 41605 Date: April 11, 2024, 12:16 p.m.
SB495 Revision: 41520 Date: April 3, 2024, 11:54 a.m.
SB495 Revision: 40815 Date: March 19, 2024, 11:08 a.m.
SB495 Revision: 40694 Date: Jan. 31, 2024, 4:13 p.m.
SB495 Revision: 40276 Date: Jan. 12, 2024, 4:01 p.m.

Docket


April 12, 2024: Executive Session: 04/17/2024 03:00 pm LOB 206-208


April 12, 2024: Public Hearing: 04/17/2024 02:30 pm LOB 206-208


April 12, 2024: Introduced 04/12/2024 and referred to Health, Human Services and Elderly Affairs HJ 11


April 11, 2024: Ought to Pass with Amendment 2024-1420s, MA, VV; OT3rdg; 04/11/2024; SJ 9


April 11, 2024: Committee Amendment # 2024-1420s, AA, VV; 04/11/2024; SJ 9


April 3, 2024: Committee Report: Ought to Pass with Amendment #2024-1420s, 04/11/2024, Vote 7-0; SC 14


Feb. 8, 2024: Ought to Pass with Amendment 2024-0407s, MA, VV; Refer to Finance Rule 4-5; 02/08/2024; SJ 3


Feb. 8, 2024: Committee Amendment # 2024-0407s, AA, VV; 02/08/2024; SJ 3


Feb. 1, 2024: Committee Report: Ought to Pass with Amendment # 2024-0407s, 02/08/2024; Vote 5-0; CC; SC 6


Jan. 11, 2024: Hearing: 01/17/2024, Room 101, LOB, 09:15 am; SC 3


Dec. 13, 2023: To Be Introduced 01/03/2024 and Referred to Health and Human Services; SJ 1