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U.S. House Passes Multiple Mental Health Bills

May 13, 2021

Yesterday, the House passed a dozen mental health bills to help to improve the nation's mental health going forward, including H.R. 1480, the Helping Emergency Responders Overcome (HERO) Act,  sponsored by a bipartisan group of over 30 lawmakers led by Reps. Ami Bera (D-CA) and Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA).  This bill will increase mental health resources for public and non-profit EMS practitioners and firefighters. 

The renewed focus comes amid concerns over overdose deaths during the pandemic and the fragile post-pandemic mental health of Americans, including our EMS practitioners. Over 89,000 individuals died of drug overdose deaths from October 2019 to October 2020, and the CDC predicts that number could reach a record of 91,000. NAEMT supports passage of H.R. 1480, but wants this bill to include all EMS practitioners, including those working for private, for-profit EMS agencies.