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Office of Behavioral Health, Disability, and Aging Policy (BHDAP)

The Office of Behavioral Health, Disability, and Aging Policy (BHDAP) focuses on policies and programs that support the independence, productivity, health and well-being, and long-term care needs of people with disabilities, older adults, and people with mental and substance use disorders.

Note: BHDAP was previously known as the Office of Disability, Aging, and Long-Term Care Policy (DALTCP). Only our office name has changed, not our mission, portfolio, or policy focus.

The Division of Behavioral Health Policy is responsible for the analysis, coordination, research and evaluation of policies related to mental and substance use disorders, also referred to as behavioral health. The division is the focal point for policy development and analysis related to the financing, access/delivery, organization, and quality of services for people with mental and substance use disorders, including those supported or financed by Medicaid, Medicare, and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).

The Division of Long-Term Services and Supports is responsible for the analysis, coordination, and research and evaluation of policies related to institutional and community-based long-term care and supportive services, including formal and informal caregiving. The Division is the focal point for policy development and analysis related to the financing, delivery, organization, and quality of long-term care services and supports, including those supported or financed by private insurers, Medicaid, Medicare, and the Administration for Community Living (ACL).

The Division of Disability and Aging Policy is responsible for policy and data development, coordination, research and evaluation of policies and programs focused on the functioning and well-being of persons with disabilities and older adults. The Division is the focal point for crosscutting disability and aging collaboration within the Department and across other federal agencies. Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias and intellectual and developmental disabilities, including Autism Spectrum Disorder, are notable areas of engagement and expertise.

Helpful Information:

Reports

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ASPE Issue Brief

Medicaid Home and Community-Based Services Section 1915(c) Waiver Policy Flexibilities During the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency: State Agency, Provider, and Consumer Experiences Issue Brief

States may use Appendix K to modify their existing Medicaid home and community-based services (HCBS) 1915(c) waiver programs during emergency situations. During the COVID-19 public health emergency, states used Appendix K to make temporary changes to access and eligibility, payment, services, and other aspects of their waiver programs.
Research Brief

Changes in Ownership of Skilled Nursing Facilities from 2016 to 2021: Variations by Size, Occupancy Rate, Penalty Amount, and Type of Ownership

Stakeholders, researchers, and policymakers have identified varying nursing home ownership structures and ownership transactions as potentially influencing the quality of care delivered to vulnerable residents.
Report

Medicare Advantage Coverage Among Individuals Receiving Federal Housing Assistance

Prior research from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (ASPE) and U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Office of Policy Development and Research (PD&R) show older adults receiving federal housing assistance face disproportionately high rates of chronic conditions and health care utilization.
ASPE Issue Brief

Tele-Behavioral Health Use Among Medicare Beneficiaries During COVID-19

This issue brief summarizes analyses of Medicare fee-for-service data examining beneficiary use of tele-behavioral health services during 2019 and 2020. Results demonstrate that the number of Medicare beneficiaries receiving behavioral health care via telehealth increased dramatically during the COVID-19 public health emergency.
Report

Feasibility of Calculating Measures to Monitor Quality Performance of Behavioral Health Programs

The calculation of behavioral health quality measures at the clinic level holds great promise for monitoring clinic performance over time, and for providing information for clinics to use to revise their processes and procedures to improve their performance.
ASPE Issue Brief

Improving Data on the Workforce Delivering Home and Community-Based Services

On April 25, 2024, HHS and DoL released recommendations, in the form of an Issue Brief, to improve data infrastructure on the workforce delivering home and community-based services (HCBS) in response to President Biden’s
Report

State Efforts to Coordinate Provider Directory Accuracy

Provider directories are lists of in-network providers produced by health care plans. They are an important tool for individuals seeking health care providers, and for regulators who monitor the adequacy of health plans’ provider networks.
Report

Health Information Technology Adoption and Utilization in Long-Term and Post-Acute Care Settings

This paper provides an overview of Health Information Technology (HIT) adoption and utilization in long-term and post-acute care (LTPAC) settings. This study found that LTPAC have adopted electronic health records (EHRs) to support clinical and business needs. Interoperable exchange of health information however is not routine or widely used.
ASPE Issue Brief

Substance Use and SUDs by Race and Ethnicity

This brief assesses whether and how rates of substance use and substance use disorder (SUD) among adults (ages 18 and older) differ by race and ethnicity. The authors combine five years of data, 2015-2019, from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH) to create sample sizes large enough to examine specific racial and ethnic groups for specific categories of drug use.