Iowa House OKs sends mental health bill to Senate


April 24th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The Iowa House has voted to overhaul the state’s mental health system, setting up a regional network designed to ensure the quality of services is consistent statewide. The House approved the measure Tuesday on a 65-32 vote, returning it to the Senate where a similar version has been approved. Cedar Rapids Republican Rep. Renee Schulte says relatively minor differences have been worked out and she anticipates quick Senate approval. Schulte says the current county-based system leads to wide variation in the quality of services offered. She says the state will spend about $52 million in taking over some of the services now being provided by counties. Supporters of the change have been working to reshape Iowa’s public mental health system for years.