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Board of Medical Assistance Services
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6/7/19  5:02 pm
Commenter: Angela Scott, M.Ed.,L.P.C. Supervisor Office of Peer Supports-NRVCS

Peer Supports
 

We have been working to develop Peer Supports Services for about 2 years locally at our CSB and in our Region 3 of Va. Extensive regulations and extreme low reimbursement rates are the barrier to developing this important service in the Va CSB system. Our agency Director has been very supportive in developing this service. It has been  an  agency team effort. Hiring and training staff Peer staff, and making positions available in program budgets is a challenge in light of the lack of sufficient reimbursement to sustain an entry level fulltime Peer salary and appropriate benefits.  Grants can help start Peer Positions, but without the funding, programs will not be able to design and build the positions within their systems.  It is an important and life saving service that is complimentary to traditional outpatient and also to less traditional community based services.  It is effective in Drug Courts, Medication Assisted Treatment, Mobile and Residential Crisis and inpatient and intensive aftercare service continuums.  The reimbursement rates and regulations can be very discouraging to Behavioral Healthcare Administrators who are working to make financial and staff ends met.   We  believe that we can overcome some of the other related roadblocks like Barrier crimes, Peer Training and supervision and Peer staff retention and advancement...but we must have hope for program administrators to fund Peer Positions.  Please increase funding and simplify regulations so CSBs and others can provide this invaluable complimentary grass roots recovery service. 

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