OLYMPIA – Legislation recommended by the state’s Children’s Mental Health Work Group passed off the Senate floor today. House Bill 1874 expands family-accessed treatment provisions for adolescents throughout the state.
“This legislation will help address the behavioral health needs of youth across our state. We are shifting how we talk about and treat behavioral health disorders,” said Sen. Manka Dhingra (D-Redmond), chair of the Senate Behavioral Health Subcommittee. “By centering families in the treatment process, we will be removing barriers to access and eliminating stigma,” Dhingra continued.
HB 1874 expands family-initiated treatment provisions for outpatient treatment to specify that a parent may access up to 12 outpatient sessions for an adolescent with a specific professional within a three-month period. Partial hospitalization and intensive outpatient treatment would also be authorized if recommended by a professional. The legislation also makes technical amendments to clarify the definition of parent for family-initiated treatment and defines language related to the privacy of a minor’s mental health information.
“This bill is about striking a balance where we get young people the treatment they need while keeping families involved as much as possible,” Dhingra said. “Our youth are hurting; it is the responsibility of the adults in the room to get them the care they need. I am focused on moving Washington to integrated behavioral health models where we holistically treat people. This legislation is key to that kind of systemic change.”
Since HB 1874 was amended on the Senate floor, it now must go back to the House for concurrence.
For information: Bre Weider, Senate Democratic Communications, 360-786-7326