Health and Human Services budget agreement saves nursing homes from devastating cuts; supports Minnesotans battling mental health issues; cracks down on fraud and waste

The Minnesota Senate approved a comprehensive health and human services budget that protects nursing homes from dramatic cuts, supports individuals battling mental health crises, and reins in fraud within the embattled Child Care Assistance Program (CCAP).

Senator Jensen commented, “Minnesota once again leads by creating health care initiatives which support a balance between the private sector and government safety net services. The bill supports children and the disabled while enhancing transparency in health care.”

The bill creates a new structure for better stewardship of childcare dollars:

  • Addresses the ongoing child care assistance fraud scandal with stronger oversight measures and stricter reporting requirements that will restore integrity
  • Initiates rigorous attendance record-keeping and applies penalties for failing to follow existing rules.
  • Funds a tracking system within the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension to enhance investigations.
  • Imposes more precise rules about how individuals and entities can be disqualified from the program

The bill supports individuals with mental health struggles:

  • Develops more resources to help Minnesotans battling mental health crises
  • Funds student mental health services and shelter-based youth mental health grants
  • Provides for expansion of Mobile Crisis Centers (specialized teams of mental health professionals providing home-based rapid response services).
  • Provides support for persons with disabilities and eases the financial burden on families who have children with disabilities by reducing TEFRA fees.

The bill supports a patient-centered, physician driven, free market place for health care:

  • Preserves the public private partnership in the provision of health care services to millions of Minnesotans.
  • Enhances pharmaceutical transparency
  • Provides support for reduced cost-sharing for insulin and other medications