By Nathaniel Weixel
May 6, 2016
 
Mental health advocates hope that a provision included in recent Medicaid managed care regulations will jump-start discussions in Congress about fixing a decades-old policy that limits Medicaid reimbursement for certain inpatient mental health care. 
 
Deep within its final rule for Medicaid managed care plans, the CMS said it would allow Medicaid reimbursement for so-called institutions of mental disease (IMD). According to the rule, if certain conditions are met—such as a stay lasting no longer than 15 days—the facility can treat patients for psychiatric or substance abuse disorder and the state Medicaid program will reimburse it.