Policy Updates

Latest Updates

Sep 26, 2022

NASW continues to work in coalition to promote student loan debt relief for social workers. There have been several developments over the past couple of weeks that we want to highlight.

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Sep 23, 2022

The Senate Finance Committee (SFC) released its mental health workforce discussion draft component of its mental health legislative package (a summary may be found here). We are pleased to report that 2 of the 3 provisions of the Improving Access to Mental Health Act are included in section 12 of the discussion draft. These provisions include allowing clinical social workers to provide Part B services to residents of skilled nursing facilities and allowing clinical social workers to bill for HBAI services.

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Aug 24, 2022

Washington, D.C. – Today President Biden announced a three-part plan to provide student loan debt relief for borrowers who need it most. This plan includes cancellation of student loan debt for individuals earning up to $125,000 annually, an extension of the federal student loan payment pause and moratorium on interest through December 31, 2022, as well as proposal of a new income-based repayment plan that will reduce future monthly payments for lower- and middle-income borrowers. Individuals who had PELL grants can have up to $20,000 canceled and other student loan borrowers can have up to $10,000 canceled. This historic student loan debt cancellation will assist thousands of social workers and their families, also alleviating the economic strain associated with the burden of student loans, for many more borrowers.

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Jul 08, 2022

The interstate compact for social work licensure draft legislation is now available for stakeholder review and public comment. Please refer to our June 10 update for background on the compact development process thus far. Also visit the Council on State Governments (CSG) website to download a copy of the draft legislation, review the fact sheet, read FAQs, and access the survey link to provide your comments.

NASW will host two stakeholder review sessions - July 26 and August 31 from 5:30-7 pm ET on NASW's Facebook page to review the draft legislation with CSG representatives and hear analysis and reflections from NASW leaders. NASW Chapters and other stakeholder groups may also host review sessions. For all NASW activities and information about the licensure compact, please visit NASW's Interstate Licensure Compact page.

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Jun 10, 2022

Development of an interstate compact for social work licensure has been underway for nearly a year, with draft legislation expected to be released for stakeholder review and public comment in July 2022. The goal is to have model legislation available to states for passage, starting in 2023 state legislative sessions.

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May 16, 2022

The National Association of Social Workers (NASW) continues to work in coalition to advocate for student loan debt relief for social workers, including loan forgiveness, cancellation, and other measures.

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May 13, 2022

The recent leak of a draft Supreme Court opinion via POLITICO regarding the potential overturning of Roe v. Wade has spurred nationwide protest, concern and actions. While the Court’s official opinion has not been released, there are fears that Roe v. Wade will be overturned, leaving states to determine if abortion access will be permitted.

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Apr 28, 2022

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has released clarifying information about Part 2 of the No Surprises Act, Good Faith Estimates (GFEs), which focuses on services provided to uninsured or self-pay patients who receive services provided by clinical social workers in independent practice. The frequently asked questions (FAQs) answer many of the questions that social workers asked when the No Surprises Act was implemented in January 2022. The new NASW FAQs answer many additional questions asked by social workers since the initial NASW FAQs were published in January 2022.

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Apr 26, 2022

Improving access to essential mental health and behavioral health services for Medicare beneficiaries remains a top NASW policy priority. Medicare payment policy is routinely looked to as a minimum standard that guides both commercial and Medicaid payers as it relates to quality and reimbursement standards. Medicare sets provider reimbursement trends across the U.S. health care system, so disparities in its rate-setting process, which tend to undervalue mental health, behavioral health and substance use disorder services, are unfortunately replicated elsewhere. NASW continues to advocate for improved access to mental health and behavioral health services in Medicare.

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Apr 22, 2022

On April 19, 2022, the U.S. Department of Education announced that it will bring student loan borrowers closer to public service loan and income-driven repayment (IDR) forgiveness by addressing historical failures in the administration of the federal student loan programs.

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NASW Members who attended NASW's 2023 Advocacy Day

NASW Advocacy Day on Capitol Hill

Nearly 100 social workers from 44 states and two U.S. territories attended 143 meetings with Congressional offices in the U.S. House and Senate on June 28, 2023

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