The 21st Century Cures Act has finally been passed in the United States, that may see major reforms in the mental healthcare system.
The bill, comprising of a mammoth budget of 6.3 billion dollars is going to change the faltering mental healthcare system, that has been a cause of grievance for an increasing number of American families.
The bill already had a huge backing from Obama’s government, even though it has come under fire for making cuts in public health programs while allowing more power to the pharmaceutical companies.
Nevertheless, it has been steadily gaining support over the last three years, since its debut around April 2014 and won with a majority of 392- 26 votes at the House.The bipartisan venture aims to correct the approval policy of the FDA, allowing drugs to reach the public quickly, aiding all those who are stuck on the wait list for potentially life threatening conditions.
Boosted innovation provided by more funds will speed the availability of drugs, especially those related to rising mental health conditions.
Critics are still vocal that the 996 pages long Act will only weaken the strict regulatory processes of the FDA.
However, none can ignore that increased funding for mental healthcare is something to look forward to. Under this bill, the NIH (National Institute of Health) is getting a funding around $4.8 billion, for a span on ten years on researches like BRAIN Initiative and Precision Medicine Initiative. It also extends funding to associations related to suicide -prevention.
Another huge improvement is the Mental Health on Campus Improvement Act which allows universities more funds to mental health aids on campus and Medicaid for children with mental disorders.
, said Dr Maria A. Quendo, MD, president of American Psychiatric Association.
Even though the bill has been passed, the funding is still under the discretion of the future Congress. The bill is now a huge source of relief for organisations tending to mental healthcare in the United States.