SALT LAKE CITY — The Senate on Wednesday overwhelmingly passed a bill seeking a federal waiver to allow the state to use Medicaid money to help pay for mobile crisis outreach teams.
Sen. Daniel Thatcher, R-West Valley City, has described such teams as a "mental health ambulance."
Mobile crisis outreach teams, frequently referred to as MCOTs, would be made up largely of mental health experts who could respond to behavioral health crises that are best suited with a treatment-oriented home visit rather than an emergency room trip or a police presence at the home, Thatcher has said.Comment on this story
"We are very excited to have Utah pioneer this issue," he told fellow lawmakers in January.
According to the senator, the service only currently exists in Salt Lake County.
The bill also asks the state Department of Health to request that its Medicaid funds be eligible to help fund the statewide mental health crisis line and local mental health crisis lines.
HB42 passed its final reading in the Senate by a 27-1 vote. Sen. Margaret Dayton, R-Orem, was the lone senator to vote no. It passed the House 72-0 in January. It will next go to Gov. Gary Herbert for consideration.