TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - Statement from Dominic M. Calabro, Florida TaxWatch President and CEO:
Earlier today, the Florida House passed Senate Bill 12. This legislation aligns with Florida TaxWatch recommendations that call for Florida’s behavioral health managing entities to be continuously and properly funded. SB 12 aims to improve behavioral health processes around the state through the creation of a coordinated system of care for those suffering from mental illness, substance abuse, or co-occurring disorders.
Helping those facing adversity due to mental health or substance abuse issues should be a priority for all Floridians. Providing care to these individuals will dramatically improve their lives while saving the state money in the long run.
The bill implements a “No Wrong Door” system that will optimize care for those suffering from mental illness and substance use, regardless of point of entry into the system. This system will be overseen by the Florida Department of Children and Families and carried out by Florida’s seven behavioral health managing entities (private, non-profit local agencies that coordinate and leverage behavioral healthcare services across the state).
Florida TaxWatch’s Center for Health and Aging strives to identify and promote the appropriate, effective, efficient, and accountable delivery of taxpayer-funded health care. We appreciate the good work of SB 12’s sponsors in incorporating our recommendations to ensure that behavioral health managing entity funding is tied to data-driven standards and performance outcomes, while working to improve those measures in ways that increase efficiency, improve outcomes and guarantee the accurate data necessary for future analyses and improvements.
Florida TaxWatch’s report on the state’s behavioral health managing entity model can be read here.