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NewsNow - 11.03.2021

ODH: COVID-19 Vaccinations for Ohio Children 5-11 Years Old Can Begin Today

The Ohio Department of Health (ODH) today announced that a large portion of the more than 367,000 doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 pediatric vaccine formulation expected to arrive in Ohio over the coming days are already available, and can immediately be administered to children ages 5-11. “We are on the threshold of a long-awaited step that brings us closer to getting through this pandemic,” ODH Director Bruce Vanderhoff, MD, MBA, shared in a press conference this morning. “Thanks to the authorization of a COVID-19 vaccine for those ages 5 to 11 years old, we can now better protect these school-aged children from severe complications from COVID-19.”

ODH also announced the official expansion of the Ohio Vax-2-School program to those ages 5 to 25, adding those between the ages of 5 and 11 years. Ohio Vax-2-School will award $2 million in scholarships to eligible Ohioans, and prizes include 150, $10,000 scholarships, and five, $100,000 grand prize scholarships. The program will include have a series of registration deadlines, and to be eligible for all prize drawings, Ohioans should register as soon as the first dose of the vaccine has been administered, ideally by the initial registration deadline of Sunday, Nov. 21. The deadlines are as follows:

  • Sunday, Nov. 21, 11:59 p.m. – eligible for all drawings.
  • Sunday, Nov. 28, 11:59 p.m. – eligible for the second drawing (75, $10,000 winners) and the grand prize drawing.
  • Wednesday, Dec. 1, 11:59 p.m. – eligible for the grand prize drawing.

Ohioans aged 5-25, or their parents or guardians, can enter online once they have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at www.ohiovax2school.com.

Ohio BH Crisis Task Force Data Collection Survey Released

The Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services (OhioMHAS), in collaboration with the Ohio Council of Behavioral Health and Family Services Providers, Ohio Association of County Behavioral Health Authorities, and community stakeholders, is convening the Ohio Crisis Task Force (OCTF) comprised of crisis system experts throughout Ohio. The OCTF is working collectively with stakeholders to develop an ideal Crisis Continuum for Ohio. As a part of this work, a crisis services data collection survey has been disseminated to local Alcohol, Drug Addiction and Mental Health Services (ADAMHS) Boards to report on local crisis services planning, baseline needs, their board’s existing crisis continuum and plans for the future. This report is as an opportunity for each ADAMHS Board to demonstrate the full range of capacity currently in place, as well as to partner with local providers and stakeholders to gather together to meet community needs in providing the full-service array in the Ohio Crisis Ideal Continuum.

Please direct survey related questions on how to complete this data collection tool to Kris Vilamaa kris@healthcareperspective.com or Steven Hedgepeth steven@healthcareperspective.com.  For general crisis related questions please email Alisia Clark Alisia.Clark@mha.ohio.gov. A two-part, on-demand webinar has been developed to support completing the data collection survey.  

Part 1

Part 2

REIMAGINE: A Week of Action to Reimagine Our National Response to People in Crisis – Nov. 15-19

The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) is bringing together advocates from throughout the nation for REIMAGINE: A Week of Action to Reimagine Our National Response to People in Crisis, taking place virtually Nov. 15-19. Throughout the week, REIMAGINE will bring together leading organizations to elevate crisis response and coordinate federal and state advocacy efforts to establish and fully fund the nation’s crisis response systems before 9-8-8 goes live in July 2022. NAMI Ohio encourages Ohioans to learn about how the current response to crises affects individuals, families and communities, and how participants can help create impactful change. Participants will hear from speakers who have first-hand experience with the current response to mental health and suicidal crises. Participants will also have the chance to engage in conversations exploring key intersections with crisis response — equity and social justice, public safety and first responders, and youth and young adults. Participants will also be provided with opportunities to advocate on behalf of their communities throughout the week. Click the link above for more information. Click HERE to learn more about Ohio’s 9-8-8 Implementation initiative being led by OhioMHAS in partnership with more than 100 Ohio advocates and stakeholders.

Good Night at the Polls for County ADAMHS Board Levies

County Alcohol, Drug Addiction and Mental Health Services Boards had a good night at the polls Tuesday as all eight levy issues on the ballot passed. The levies will allow ADAMH Boards to continue to provide evidence-based programming and services for Ohioans in their Board areas. Ohio Association of County Behavioral Health Authorities (OACBHA) CEO Cheri Walter noted the results shows that “Ohioans truly understand that treatment works, people recover, and Recovery is Beautiful.” OhioMHAS joins with OACBHA in extending congratulations to the following Boards:

  • Athens-Hocking-Vinton ADAMHS Board
  • Delaware-Morrow Mental Health & Recovery Services Board
  • Four County (Defiance, Fulton, Henry, Williams) ADAMHS
  • Logan-Champaign Counties MHDAS Board
  • Tri-County (Miami, Darke, Shelby) Board of Recovery and Mental Health Services
  • Paint Valley ADAMH Board (Fayette, Highland, Pickaway, Pike, Ross)
  • Mental Health and Recovery Board Serving Warren and Clinton Counties
  • Montgomery County ADAMHS Board

Prolonged Services Code Updates Effective Jan. 1, 2022 for Community Behavioral Health Providers

In July, the Ohio Department of Medicaid (ODM) communicated via MITS BITS the continued use of 99354 and 99355 as allowable billing codes for prolonged services associated with certain evaluation and management (E&M) services on a temporary basis until MITS programming and Ohio Administrative Code (OAC) rules could be updated to align with the prolonged services coding guidance implemented by the American Medical Association (AMA) and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) on Jan. 1, 2021. Effective for dates of service on or after Jan. 1, 2022, ODM and Medicaid managed care plans will require Medicaid community behavioral health providers to use AMA procedure codes of 99415 and 99416 for prolonged E&M services. Providers should refer to the Current Procedural Terminology (CPT®) manual for additional information about appropriate use of codes 99415 and 99416.   

Beginning on Jan. 1, 2022 MITS and Managed Care Plan billing logic will follow National Correct Coding Initiative (NCCI) Procedure to Procedure (PTP) edits and will no longer allow the use of 99354 and 99355 with E&M codes 99202-99205 and 99211-99215. Prolonged services codes 99354 and 99355 will continue to be covered for use with other codes as allowed by CPT guidance. Medicaid coverage of prolonged services codes 99417 and G2212 (added effective Jan. 1, 2021) will continue. Providers should refer to the CPT manual and the Healthcare Common Procedure Coding System (HCPCS) for additional information about appropriate use of codes 99417 and G2212. The proposed Medicaid payment amounts for prolonged services codes effective Jan. 1, 2022 can be found in the appendix to OAC rule 5160-27-03, which was filed on Oct. 15, 2021. ODM will be revising the Behavioral Health Provider Manual to include these changes related to billing for prolonged services. A subsequent MITS BITS will be released when the new provider manual is available. Questions about this update may be emailed to BH-Enroll@Medicaid.Ohio.Gov.

CDC Launches New Education Campaigns Aimed at Preventing Drug Overdose Deaths

To save more lives from drug overdose, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently launched four new education campaigns intended to reach young adults ages 18-34. The campaigns provide information about the prevalence and dangers of fentanyl, the risks and consequences of mixing drugs, the life-saving power of naloxone, and the importance of reducing stigma around drug use to support treatment and recovery. The four educational campaigns include: Fentanyl Can be Hidden in Drugs, Mixing Drugs Can Cause Overdoses, Naloxone Saves Lives, and People in Treatment and Recovery Need Support.

Preventing Caregiver Burnout by Illuminating Hope – Nov. 18

In recognition of November as National Family Caregivers Month, and in honor of family and professional caregivers, Courage to Caregivers will present a free interactive program, Preventing Caregiver Burnout by Illuminating Hope, from 7:00-8:30 p.m. Nov. 18. This virtual event will include two components: a guided breathing meditation as an embodied experience focused on hope, and a presentation covering the evidence-based research and science that leads to finding hope and building resilience. Both the meditation and the presentation will be offered to support caregivers in their efforts to model hope and resilience for their families and themselves. Click HERE for more information.

In the News

11.2.21 | The New York Times How fentanyl and meth took over America

11.2.21 | Mount Vernon News HPIO Addiction Evidence Project outlines ‘unjustly punitive and unfair policies’ leading to disparities in addiction

11.2.21 | WKYC-TV Experts say mental health resources needed in schools to help stem violence

11.2.21 | Mansfield News-Journal Five years of serving patients for Five Points Primary Care

11.1.21 | Cleveland.com Cuyahoga County Diversion Center expands to allow self and family member referrals for treatment

11.1.21 | Urbana Daily Citizen Urbana Youth Center wraps up renovation

11.1.21 | WEWS-TV Strongsville family inspires bill in honor of their son on COVID-19 mental health impact

11.1.21 | Hillsboro Times-Gazette Ministry combats drug addiction

11.1.21 | WCPO-TV Army soldier’s own loss to veteran suicide creates calling

10.30.21 | Celina Daily Standard Chief deputy lauded for helping those affected by substance abuse

10.25.21 | Cleveland.com Keep your own needs on your radar, too