AG Healey Announces Grant Program to Provide Mental Health Care Support; Prevent Emergency Department Boarding

  • Massachusetts AG Maura Healey has announced a new grant program to mitigate the impact of patients utilizing hospital inpatient and emergency department beds for mental health care needs.
  • According to the AG’s office, the utilization of emergency room or inpatient facilities for patients waiting for mental health services, known as “emergency department boarding,” has escalated in recent years and has been exacerbated by hospital staffing shortages
  • The $2.9 million program is partially funded from the nearly $1 million the state secured in behavioral health parity settlements in 2019 and 2020, and will support nonprofits that provide services that divert patients requiring urgent mental health care from hospital emergency departments, such as community or home-based crisis or urgent mental health services; nonclinical mental health crisis alternatives; and home-based intensive support and care coordination following a patient’s discharge from a hospital’s emergency department. The funds may also be used to create new programming, expand current programs/services, or sustain programs with funding shortfalls.