On Friday, June 22, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) issued its first request for comments on how to approach the issue of defining and listing services and practices that will qualify under the Family First Prevention Services Act. The comments are due by July 22.

Under the Family First Prevention Services Act, HHS is required to establish and maintain a public clearinghouse of practices for mental health and substance abuse prevention and treatment programs and in-home parent skill-based programs that meet the evidence-based standards of “promising,” “supported,” and “well-supported” practices. 

The notice:  

  • Identifies and requests comment on potential initial criteria for:
    • Identifying eligible programs and services for review by the clearinghouse
    • Prioritizing eligible programs and services for review
    • Identifying eligible studies aligned with prioritized programs and services
    • Prioritizing eligible studies for rating
    • Rating studies
    • Rating programs and services as promising, supported, and well-supported practices
  • Requests comment on potential programs and services that may meet the criteria stated in the notice and that should be considered as candidates for systematic review

States have the option to fund the qualifying services starting Oct. 1, 2019 (fiscal year 2020) with states required to spend at least 50 percent of federal dollars drawn-down on services at the highest level (well-supported) programs.   

It is important to note that the format put forth for submitting comments must be strictly followed.  

Inform Marlo Nash, senior vice president for public policy and mobilization at the Alliance, if you submit comments or if you have questions on creating and submitting comments.

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